SUNY Orange to host master class on congas and Latin music on Feb. 3

| 15 Feb 2012 | 11:27

Middletown — Renato Thoms will lead a master class on the “Styles of Latin Music” on Friday, Feb. 3, beginning at 11 a.m. in Room 23 of Orange Hall on the Middletown campus of SUNY Orange. This event will be an opportunity to have fun while learning because the featured instruments are congas. Congas are Afro-Cuban percussion instruments, and when played by the virtuosic hands of Thoms, they mesmerize. Thoms has twice performed on the stage of Orange Hall Theatre, both times with La Familia Sextet, and the last time during November’s 2011 Jazz Weekend Latin Night. Congas are drums that are tunable to several notes, and different strokes produce many tones. During the master class, Thoms will explain the specific characteristics of each of the broad spectrum of Latin Music styles, and then demonstrate the rhythms on his congas. He welcomes questions. Born and raised in Panama, Renato Thoms attended the Conservatory of the National University of Heredia, Costa Rica, where he studied classical music. He continued his formal college education in Boston where he received a bachelor’s degree in Music Performance from Berklee College of Music and his master’s degree in Jazz Studies from The Boston Conservatory. He has made 57 recordings, played with many ensembles and jazz greats, and designed and implemented programs at Carnegie Hall and Brooklyn Conservatory. This program is free and open to the public and presented by Cultural Affairs. For more information, call 845-341-4891, e-mail or visit online at