B i o g r a p h y
Lorena Guillen, vocalist and artistic director, has become a figure of the Tango scene in US by presenting with her Lorena Guillen Tango Ensemble imaginative programs that center on, but also expand, the notions of traditional tango standards and “new” tango.
From her childhood, Lorena remembers being mesmerized by the sounds of her grandfather's tango and opera recording collection, and also attending with her father various festivals, where she learned about major figures of the Argentinian folk. Those experiences sparked her musical passion and lead her to express herself through singing in all of this wide array of styles with the most natural flexibility.
Lorena brings her long musical experience, on diverse stages at the national and international level, as a classically trained singer, popular song interpreter and music director, traveling as far as Kathmandu (Nepal) and taking her own Durham-Chapel Hill choir in tour to Argentina (August 2015). She has sang as a soloist in concerts at: Monaco Open Air Cinema (Prince Albert 1st Foundation), Camargo Foundation (Cassis, France), National Gallery of Art and Shakespeare Theater (Wash. DC), Kleinhans Buffalo Symphony Circle (NY), Fricks Museum-Summer Concert Series (Pittsburgh, PA), Chautauqua Institution (NY), “New Music New Haven” of Yale University (CT), Music Gallery at Toronto (Canada), Music-at-the-ForeFront (OH), Stockhausen Music Festival (Kurten, Germany), MusicBox Concert Series (Saint Lucia, W.I) and Puerto Rico University.
Lorena has received two Notable Latina Awards from the Latino Coalition of the Triad, and awarded artist grants from NewMusicUSA, Arts Greensboro through their "Regional Artist Award" and EDI Grant from University of North Carolina-College of Visual and Performing Arts.
As a “tango” scholar, Guillén is the author of the articles on “Tango” and "Astor Piazzolla” published in the Grove Dictionary of American Music (2nd ed.), and on oral-history in music for the International Review Journal of Music and Music Performance. She has presented her research on Argentine female tango singers of the 1920s and 1930s and Jewish tango on lecture-recitals in conferences and university venues.
Guillén has recorded for Innova Records, University of Arizona Recordings, and Kindermusik. She has two albums, The Other Side of My Heart and Exótica Flor, with her own Lorena Guillén Tango Ensemble,. Her earlier Never Too Tango features her singing along with notable guest artists of the US tango and "classical" scene, such as double-bass player Pablo Aslan, bandoneón player David Alsina, guitar player Pancho Navarro and the Amherst Saxophone Quartet.
Guillén has been faculty at State University of New York-Buffalo, Hartwick College (NY), Artist in Residence at the Saint Lucia School of Music in the Saint Lucia island (West Indies), and is currently teaching at University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She is the music director of the Triangle Jewish Chorale since 2011, a community regional choir of more than 50 members.