Kronos’ Fifty for the Future Composers

Mario Galeano Toro - Colombia

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Program Notes

About Tolo Midi, Galeano writes:

Tolo Midi is a piece influenced by the rhythmic and melodic universe of Cumbia, a musical style born in the Colombian Caribbean as a result of the encounter between indigenous American, African and European people. It is a rhythmic piece that wants to give the interpreter an immersion into syncopation and the fundamental legacy of Africa in America (be strict with accents!), while exploring native melodic phrasing from the Tolo, one of the names of the indigenous flutes that provided the melodic identity for Cumbia. Although Cumbia originated in Colombia, it spread impressively through the whole continent unlike no other style in the Americas. The piece could even be performed from California to Patagonia and be recognized as local.”

About Mario Galeano Toro


Mario Galeano Toro, born in Bogotá, has been focused over the past 15 years on researching Colombian tropical music and its diaspora throughout the continent. His search has resulted in influential tropicalista projects that range from roots music to experimental music, such as Frente Cumbiero, Los Pirañas, and Ondatrópica. His projects have been released on around 10 vinyl records, and performed in more than 35 countries worldwide.

He studied composition in the World Music department of Rotterdam’s Conservatory in the Netherlands. He has achieved grants and distinctions from cultural organizations from Colombia and abroad, as well as a Latin Grammy for musical production. He is a record collector of music from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa. Galeano is a university teacher of music history, and a record cutting apprentice. 

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