Quinteto Latino blends the vibrant colors and vigorous rhythms of Latin American music with the sumptuous voices of the wind quintet: flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, and bassoon. Whether exploring new twists on traditional folk songs or premiering works by living composers, these five musicians perform with impeccable artistry and infectious energy – educating, enriching, and entertaining listeners of all ages and backgrounds. Founded in 2001 by French hornist Armando Castellano, this unique ensemble is passionately dedicated to a dual mission: to expand the cultural boundaries of classical music, and to make that music available, relevant, and inspiring to entirely new audiences.
Diane Grubbe – Flute
Diane has appeared as flute and piccolo soloist with the Siena Music Festival in Italy, the San Francisco Concerto Orchestra, L’Orchestre de Notre Dame in San Francisco and the Calabasas Chamber Orchestra in Southern California, with whom she recorded the Vivaldi Piccolo Concerto for their CD, The Baroque Concerto. As an orchestral flutist, Diane freelances throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, performing with many groups including the Vallejo Symphony, Napa Valley Symphony, Pocket Opera, Lamplighters, Golden Gate Opera, Lyric Opera and Festival Opera. As a flute instructor, she maintains a busy studio in Noe Valley, San Francisco.
Drawn to the evolving tonal possibilities of the flute, Diane enjoys studying and performing contemporary works. Notable performances include the US premiere of John Wolf Brennan’s solo flute piece, Drei ver-flix-te Stücke and an appearance in the Bay Area retrospective of Pauline Oliveros’ work, where she performed Trio for Flute, Piano and Page Turner with Sarah Cahill and Monique Buzzarté. She has been a guest performer with the contemporary music group sfSound, performing works by Luciano Berio, James Tenney, Brian Ferneyhough, Morton Subotnick and many others.
Diane holds Bachelor and Masters degrees in flute performance from San Francisco State University and the San Francisco Conservatory, respectively. Her instructors include Paul Renzi, Lloyd Gowen and Tim Day of the San Francisco Symphony; and Barbara Chaffe and Jim Walker of the San Francisco Ballet and Opera Orchestras. She has performed in masterclasses with Julius Baker, Heinz Holliger, Robert Dick and Robert Stallman.
Kyle Bruckmann – Oboe
Oboist Kyle Bruckmann’s creative work spans a dizzying aesthetic range, from a traditional Western classical foundation into genre-bending gray areas encompassing free jazz, electronic music and post-punk rock. International touring and appearances on more than 40 recordings have led to his recognition as “a modern day renaissance musician” and “a seasoned improviser with impressive extended technique and peculiar artistic flair.”
Since moving to the Bay Area in 2003, he has performed with the San Francisco Symphony and other ensembles throughout the region while joining forces with the Stockton Symphony, Quinteto Latino, and new music collective sfSound. From 1996 until his westward relocation, he had been a fixture in multiple sectors of Chicago’s thriving experimental music underground, with frequent collaborators including Jim Baker, Jeb Bishop, Olivia Block, Guillermo Gregorio, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Robbie Hunsinger, Ernst Karel, and Michael Zerang. Ongoing affiliations include EKG, the “rock” monstrosity Lozenge, and the quintet Wrack.
Bruckmann earned undergraduate degrees in music and psychology at Rice University in Houston, studying oboe with Robert Atherholt and achieving academic distinction as a member of Phi Beta Kappa. He completed his Masters degree in 1996 at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he studied oboe performance with Harry Sargous and contemporary improvisation with Ed Sarath. He has attended the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival in Maine, the Chautauqua Institution in upstate New York, and the Music Academy of the West in Santa Barbara.
Leslie Tagorda – Clarinet
Born and raised in Hawaii, clarinetist Leslie Tagorda attended the Eastman School of Music where she received a Bachelor of Music in Clarinet Performance. She continued her education and completed her Master’s in Music at the University of Hawaii. In Hawaii Leslie worked with the Royal Hawaiian Band as Associate Principal and E-flat Clarinetist, with the Hawaii Opera Theater, and with the Honolulu Symphony as a freelance musician. She has taught clarinet since 1992 and was the clarinet professor for the Continuing Education program of the University of Hawaii. Leslie performed as the featured Guest Artist for Nova Music at the University of North Texas in 2001.
In the Bay Area, Leslie freelances with various regional orchestras including the Oakland-East Bay Symphony, Sacramento Philharmonic, Sacramento Opera, Modesto Symphony, Marin Symphony, Monterey Symphony, California Symphony, New Century Chamber Orchestra, and the San Francisco Ballet.
When not busy with music, Leslie runs her own branding and design company, FLAIR-Designs where she explores the many parallels between design and music including theory (color/harmonic), rhythm, texture, timbre, and emotional drivers.
Shawn Jones – Bassoon
Bassoonist Shawn Jones, the newest member of Quinteto Latino, is a graduate of the Juilliard School and Rice University. He has performed as a member of the Colorado, Detroit, and San Francisco Symphonies as both a bassoonist and contrabassoonist. During the summers he has taught at the renowned Interlochen Arts Camp, performed with the Grand Tetons Music Festival Orchestra, traveled to Japan to perform with the Pacific Music Festival, toured Russia with the American Russian Youth Orchestra, and currently performs as a member of the Colorado Music Festival. Shawn is also very active as a freelance musician in the San Francisco Bay area, playing as a member of the Santa Rosa Symphony as well as a frequent Substitute with the San Francisco Ballet and Opera Orchestras.
In addition to his skills as a bassoonist, he is also a Nationally Certified Massage Therapist and black belt in Kung Fu. Shawn was born and raised in Miami, Florida and was recently transplanted to the Bay Area in 2005.
Armando Castellano – French Horn
Armando Castellano is a musician and educator originally from San Jose, now living in Menlo Park, California. Armando graduated with honors from San Jose City College and the University of California at Los Angeles where he studied with Bob Watt and Richard Todd, before moving on to receive a master degree at the Manhattan School of Music in New York City where he studied with Erik Ralske and Jerome Ashby as part of their Orchestral Performance Program. He attended the Aspen music festival in addition to several tours with the Russian American Youth Orchestra. He has performed in many of the Bay Area’s regional orchestras and has spent much of the last ten years organizing and performing chamber music, culminating in his current work as founder and director of the wind quintet, Quinteto Latino.
Though a musician his entire life, Armando rarely had the opportunity to perform classical works culturally relevant to him and his community until the formation of this unique ensemble. He has taught throughout the Bay Area in both English and Spanish and is currently an adjunct faculty member at San José City College. The rest of his life is devoted to engaging himself philanthropically with his other passion, the environment, and raising his two sons, Andries and Wim, who respectfully refer to “Papi’s” musician friends as “niños de música”.