To the memory of my good friend and clarinetist Kalman Bloch
David Díaz is a Cuban-American freelance clarinetist, arranger and music educator in the Southern California area. He was educated at Hamilton Academy of Music and at the University of California, Los Angeles where he studied clarinet performance and chamber music with the acclaimed studio musician and Centaur recording artist Gary Gray and composition/arranging with film composer Paul Chihara (Crossing Delancey & China Beach). His musical mentor, friend, and influential teacher was the late Kalman Bloch, the legendary retired principal clarinetist of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
To his credit, David Díaz has performed in the major concert halls in the US such as: Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Carnegie Hall, the Walt Disney Concert Hall, Royce Hall (Los Angeles), Hollywood Bowl, and many others. As an orchestral musician, he was part of the world premiere of Ian Krouse's opera: Lorca, Child of the Moon. As both a member of the Air Force Band of the Southwest and the Premier Air Force Academy Band, he has collaborated with opera star Renee Fleming, the Boston Brass, Sammy Nestico and Bill Watrous. As a jazz musician, he was in the orchestra that premiered Kenny Burrell's Ralph Bunche Suite along with Jazz flutist Hubert Laws (for the official review please visit: http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/article.php?id=32272#.UiFaCz_GVek). True to his Cuban lineage, he also has appeared as a guest artist with Cuban Grammy nominated group La Charanga Cubana.
As an arranger, he has worked to bring Latin American music to a wide audience by arranging various Latin American pieces for Flute and Clarinet. The pieces include 12 Cuban Dances by Ignacio Cervantes, Mignon by Ramon Aquabella, Tú by Eduardo Sanchez de Fuentes and La Bella Cubana by Jose White.
As a music educator, he enjoys giving master-classes in the inner-city schools as a way to promote the arts in the communities and is a leading proponent of using new technologies in music education. As a music education advocate, he is on the board of directors for the Los Angeles based non-profit Crescendo Young Musicians Guild, and a founding member of Barrio Music Organization: http://www.barriomusic.org/, which offers children of all cultural and socio-economic backgrounds music lessons through an emphasis on chamber music performances. Currently, David is principal clarinetist of the Bellflower Symphony Orchestra, Guapacha Showband: http://guapacha.webs.com/ as well as a founding member along with flutists Micah Layne and Gil Tower the Midas Ensemble which focuses on exposing classical and modernist music of Latin-American and Iberian composers.