Sierra: Working with Pacho

“Working with Pacho Flores was really great!” And so, composer Roberto Sierra introduces us to the soloist of his new trumpet concerto Salseando (Concerto for Trumpet and Orchestra). The three-movement, 18-minute work premieres on January 9, performed by the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra led by Domingo Hindoyan.

Trumpet soloist Pacho Flores; photo courtesy:

“I would say that Salseando is traditional in the sense of its fast-slow-fast movements [and] structure. On the other hand, it is infused with popular idioms, hence the title ‘Salseando,’ a word derived from the concept of ‘salsa’ music. As in my Concerto for Saxophones, I’ve also provided the opportunity for the soloist to improvise, in the manner that salsa musicians would do in the [score’s] ‘montuno’ sections.”

Sierra shares some insight into Salseando. “I was approached about the project by Pacho’s manager Carlos Magan (from ACM Concerts). I immediately loved the idea. Pacho is one of the best trumpet players of our times! Collaborating with him was [amazing]. We communicated via Skype and he would show me the range of available trumpets [that] he has. Even after I had written my first draft, Pacho suggested using other trumpets either for color or range changes. I used everything from the piccolo trumpet to one that uses the trombone register.”

More Sierra news: On the 12th, the Imani Winds and the Catalyst Quartet perform Sierra’s Concierto de Camara at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC. On the 30th, the Louisiana Philharmonic — led by Carlos Miguel Prieto — performs Sierra’s ever-popular Fandangos.