Led by Greek-born composer, orchestrator, singer & accordionist Magda Giannikou, Banda Magda moves from samba to French chanson, from Greek folk tunes to Colombian cumbia and Afro-Peruvian lando.
Drawing on the band’s global background (Greece, Argentina, Japan, Colombia, USA), the group combines South American rhythms with jazz improvisation, cinematic arranging, sophisticated audience participation, mid-century classics and world “chansons” sung in 6 languages.
Founded in 2010 in New York, Banda Magda has toured in more than 22 countries and 5 continents. This group of close musical friends turn Giannikou’s songs into engaging romps that have won them a spot with Carnegie Hall Musical Explorers Series, Snarky Puppy’s Family Dinner Vol.1 as well as performances at discerning venues and festivals such as WOMAD, Atlanta Jazz Festival, Vancouver Jazz Festival, L’Olympia, Jazz à Vienne, Canarias Jazz, Apollo Hammersmith, The Kennedy Center, Kathmandu Jazz Festival and many more. After their debut album "Amour, t’es là?” and sophomore “Yerakina”, Banda Magda will be touring its 3rd opus, the vibrant, Technicolor "Tigre" worldwide.
Founder of Banda Magda
Trained in film scoring, arranging and music production at Berklee, Greek-born singer, film scorer, and composer Magda Giannikou has collaborated with everyone from Kronos Quartet (she was commissioned by and performed with the quartet at Lincoln Center 2013) to Louis CK (she worte and sang a duet with CK for the comedian’s TV show) and Snarky Puppy (participated in their Grammy Award Winning Family Dinner Vol.1).
In almost every facet of the music industry, Giannikou may be best known through her world music ensemble/collective, Banda Magda, founded in 2011.
Banda Magda moves from samba to French chanson, from Greek folk tunes to Colombian cumbia and Afro-Peruvian lando. Their songs capture the best of mid-century pop ballads and cinematic arranging, drawing on the band’s global background and unchained musicality.
This group of close musical friends turn Giannikou’s songs into engaging romps that have won them a spot with Carnegie Hall Musical Explorers Series, as well as performances at discerning venues and festivals such as Webster Hall, Irving Plaza, The Kennedy Center, The Jefferson Center, Celebrate Brooklyn, Jazz al Parque, St. Moritz Festival Da Jazz, the Chicago World Music Festival, Atlanta Jazz Festival and WOMAD.
After the success of their brilliantly colorful albums, "Amour, t’es là?" (Top 10 Billboard World Music Charts, NPR’s All Songs Considered, First Listen, NPR’s 10 favorite World Music Albums 2013), and "Yerakina" (co-produced by GRAMMY Award-winners Michael League and Fab Dupont), the Banda is in pre-production of their 3rd opus, the vibrant, technicolor TIGRE.
Andres Rotmistrovsky is a rising star who is in demand. His bass guitar is heard on more than 70 albums and he has worked with acclaimed artists including Joan Baez, Sertab Erener, Paquito D’Rivera, Eva Ayllon, Marta Gomez and La Mala Rodriguez. He has toured the world several times and performed in prestigious venues including The Blue Note Jazz Club, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, at the Latin Grammys, The Apollo Theater, Nokia Theater, Boston Symphony Hall and the Montreux Jazz Festival.
He has created quite a buzz with his melodic approach to bass and has been featured in publications and on websites including No Treble, Basstheworld.com, Bass Musician Magazine and For Bass Players only. Andres holds down the bottom while setting a slot which combines melody and harmony to create a vibrant, lyrical sound. His bass sings.
A native of Buenos Aires, Argentina; Andres attended Berklee College of Music in Boston on several scholarships – The International Award, the Charles Mingus Award and the highly coveted Outstanding Performer Award.
After graduating with honors with a degree in Jazz Composition in 2007, Andres relocated to New York where he currently is based. He performs around the world while continuing to hone his unique style playing, arranging, and producing. He is sharing what he has learned as a dedicated music educator and he remains a devoted researcher of the endless treasures in music.
Marcelo Woloski is one of today’s most active, innovative and versatile world-music percussionists. His flawless skill, charismatic personality and unique approach to percussion setup and orchestration has made him the to-go person for recording artists, producers and arrangers throughout the globe. The much-in-demand musician, tours the world with approximately 200 shows per year, all the while having participated in more than 50 albums.
Among the albums recorded, his credits include “Ground Up” and “Family Dinner 2” by Snarky Puppy , which features Salif Keita, Susana Baca, and Jacob Collier among many other talents. “Amour, T’es La?” (Love, are you there?) - NPR’s Top 10 World Music Albums and #9 on the Billboards World Music Charts, and the second album “Yerakina” reaching #2 on the iTunes World charts and Latin Grammy award winner “Colreando” by Marta Gomez and friends. Marcelo endorses Latin Percussion and Garrahand.
Born in Buenos Aires Argentina, Woloski graduated from Berklee College of Music, and moved to New York City, where he is been based since 2008. He is a member of Banda Magda, Gregorio Uribe Big Band, Sofía Ribeiro group, Nicolas Ospina group, Farah Siraj group and Snarky Puppy, and he is currently working on his debut album.
Banda Magda and Gregorio Uribe Big Band guitarist, Ignacio Hernandez was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He studied music at the Escuela de Musica Contemporanea and then continued at the Centro de Altos Estudios Musicales. He also graduated as a Musical Producer from the EMBA (Escuela de Música de Buenos Aires).
Captivated by jazz, Ignacio began his search to find his own sound in contemporary music and decided to continue his musical studies. At Boston’s Berklee College of Music he found his passion for the fusion of jazz and south american rhythms. He graduated summa cum laude from the Jazz Composition department. During this time he received two of the most prestigious awards in this department: The Herb Pomeroy and the Carla Bley awards.
With Banda Magda he has released two albums, “Amour, T’es La?” (Love, are you there?) reaching NPR’s Top 10 World Music Albums and #9 on the Billboards World Music Charts, and the second album “Yerakina” reaching #2 on the iTunes World charts. He has also toured throughout the world and the United States and on several occasions going alongside with Grammy winning bandmates Snarky Puppy.
Hailing originally from Nagasaki, Japan, Keita Ogawa is Grammy Award winning(as Snarky puppy member) and one of the most versatile and sought-after percussionist and drummer in New York City.
He started his music career on drum set at the age of 15.
After performing regularly in Tokyo for several years, Keita decided to pursue his musical studies overseas. He was accepted into the prestigious Berklee College of Music in fall of 2005 where he studied with legendary musicians and educators Manuel “Egui” Castrillo, Jamey Haddad, Tito De Gracia, David Rosado, and Mark Walker. Seeking full immersion into the world of Brazilian percussion, Keita relocated to Rio de Janeiro for 3 months and studied with the some of the country's most respected musicians- Jorginho do Pandeiro, Celsinho Silva, Kiko Freitas, and Marcio Bahia among others.
Since his arrival in America, Keita has worked with some of the biggest names in modern music including Yo-yo-ma, Assad Brothers, Maria Schneider Jazz Orchestra, Romero Lubambo, Clarice Assad, Jaques Morelenbaum, Osvaldo Golijov, Benny Green, Eric Harland, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra and more.
Currently he works several projects like, Banda Magda, Bokantè, Camila Meza and the Nectar Orchestra, Clarice Assad and 3 times Grammy winner band Snarky Puppy.
Also He is endorsed by Canpus Drum, Latin Percussion, Sabian Cymbal, Vic Firth, Cooperman Company, Dem Sticks, Parka Percussion and Decora 43.