ABOUT

Hilario Duran - credit Fredy Velez

Hilario Luis Durán Torres

Cuban born Hilario Durán grew up in Havana in a musical family surrounded by a variety of diverse musical influences on a daily basis. He began working as a professional musician in Cuba’s Los Papa Cun­-Cun Ensemble and in a variety of musical formats. Later on, in the 70’s, Durán was Chucho Valdés’ chosen successor in Cuba’s most modern big band, Orquesta Cubana de Música Moderna.

Hilario Durán toured worldwide and performed with Dizzy Gillespie and Michel Legrand, among many others, as part of Arturo Sandoval’s band where he was pianist/keyboardist, arranger and musical director for 9 years.

Chucho Valdés has acknowledged Grammy-nominated and multi JUNO-award winner Hilario Durán as “an unparalleled pianist, composer and arranger of the first order”.

After making his mark in Cuba, Durán continued to hone his skills as a pianist, composer, arranger and musical director of remarkable virtuosity. Since arriving in Canada, Hilario has made a name for himself, he is a multi-Canadian Juno Award winner and nominee, an American Grammy nominee, a multi-Canadian National Jazz Award winner & nominee and the proud recipient of the 2007 Chico O’Farrill Lifetime Achievement Award, from Latin Jazz USA, for his outstanding contributions to Afro-Cuban Jazz and Latin Jazz.

Cuban-Canadian jazz pianist Hilario Durán is a fixture on the Toronto music scene. Durán immigrated in 1998 to Canada and was named as One of the 10 Most Influential Hispanic Canadians in 2009. Hilario has been named Best Artist of the Year 2013 by the Toronto Musicians’ Association and also as 2014 Best Vision Award Winner (Premio a la Trayectoria) for his work as entrepreneur as a director of his musical company, ES MI MUSICA PRODUCTIONS. Hilario is a 2018 Recipient of the Louis Applebaum Composers Award by the Ontario Arts Foundation. He is also an educator at Toronto’s Humber College, acting as a piano teacher and ensemble director.

Hilario Durán has been based in Toronto for the past two decades, but his musical heart and soul have remained closely connected to the land of his birth. He has continued to collaborate with Cuban musicians, but he takes this to another level on Contumbao.  In November 2016, Alma Records’ Peter Cardinali and award-winning engineer John ‘Beetle’ Bailey accompanied Durán to Havana, and the team set up shop in Cuba’s famed EGREM recording studio, the most storied such facility on the island. The cast of musical heavyweights assembled in Havana work their magic on 11 new Durán original compositions. Hilario’s mission is certainly fulfilled here, as Contumbao has an impressive dynamic range of different tempos, tones and moods.

 

Hilario Duran - Awards

Awards

  • 2023: Special Recognition for Achievements in Music. City Council of Cleveland, Ohio.
  • 2020: Winner of the Latin Awards Canada.
  • 2018: Recipient of the Louis Applebaum Composers Award by the Ontario Arts Foundation
  • 2013: Musician of the Year. Toronto Musicians’ Association
  • 2013 Vision Awards: Premio a la Trayectoria.
  • 2009: One of the 10 Most Influential Hispanic Canadians.
  • 2008: World Group Artist of the Year. Hilario Durán as Special Guest of Odessa/Havana.
  • 2007: Honoured with prestigious Chico O’Farrill Lifetime Achievement Award in Miami for his outstanding contributions to Afro-Cuban Jazz and Latin Jazz.
  • 2007: Latin Jazz Artist of the Year. Canadian National Jazz Awards.
  • 2007: Big Band of the Year. Canadian National Jazz Awards.
  • 2006: Latin Jazz Award of the Year. Canadian National Jazz Awards.
  • 2006: Canadian JUNO winner. “From the Heart” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big Band. Contemporary Jazz Album of the Year.
  • 2005: Canadian JUNO Winner. “New Danzón” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán Trio. Contemporary Jazz Album of the Year.
  • 2005: Excellence in Music. Eleventh Annual Canadian Big Big Band Celebration. Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big Band.
  • 1982-83: Premio EGREM for Best Arranger of the Year—one of Cuba’s most prestigious music prizes.

Nominations

  • 2024: JUNO Awards nomination for “Cry Me A River” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big Band featuring Paquito D’Rivera, Horacio “El Negro” Hernández, OKAN. Jazz Album of the Year (Group).
  • 2024: Grammy Nomination. 66th Annual Grammy Awards. Best Arrangement, Instrumental or a Capella. Track: “I Remember Mingus.” Hilario Durán, arranger. Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big Band featuring Paquito D’Rivera.
  • Finalist of the 2023 Toronto Arts Foundation Awards (Murriel Sherrin Award).
  • 2021: Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. Canadian Screen Awards. Best Achievement in Music: Original Song. Two nominations for the songs “El Milagro” and “Mambo Dominante” from the Soundtrack of the movie “The Cuban.”
  • 2018 Louis Applebaum Composers Award by the Ontario Arts Foundation.
  • 2018: JUNO Awards nomination for “Contumbao” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán. Jazz Album of the Year (Solo).
  • 2010: Two JUNO Awards nominations for “Motion” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán Trio. Best Contemporary Jazz Album of the Year and Recording Engineer of the Year (John “Beetle” Bailey).
  • 2010: “Motion” Named #1 Latin Jazz Best Recording by Latin Jazz Network.
  • 2010: Eight nominations by the National Jazz Awards: Keyboardist, Pianist, Instrumentalist, Arranger, SOCAN Composer, Big Band, Jazz Album.
  • 2007: Latin Jazz Artist of the Year. Canadian National Jazz Awards.
  • 2007: Grammy nomination. Best Solo for the song “Paq Man.” “From The Heart” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán and his Latin Jazz Big Band featuring Paquito D’Rivera and Horacio “El Negro” Hernández.
  • 2006: JUNO Awards nomination for “Encuentro en La Habana” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán & Perspectiva. Contemporary Jazz album of the Year.
  • 2006: Six nominations by the National Jazz Awards: Musician of the Year, Pianist of the Year, Acoustic Group, Big Band of the Year, Arranger of the Year, Latin Jazz Artist of the Year.
  • 2005: Canadian JUNO Nomination. “New Danzón” (Alma Records/Universal). Hilario Durán Trio. Contemporary Jazz Album of the Year.
  • 2002: Hilario Durán & Havana Remembered: Best Global Album.
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