percussion quartet

“What mesmerizing creativity,! A Tour de Force of subtle and forceful
artistry. The members of Tambuco are chameleons on dozens of instruments.”

— Gramophone Magazine (UK) 

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About Tambuco

In their native Mexico and worldwide, Tambuco is known for its unique repertoire and breathtakingly vibrant performances. From body percussion, to sticks and stones, to modern percussion instruments, Tambuco's approach to sound and rhythm is virtuosic, visceral, and extraordinarily enjoyable. 

With over 25 years of international concerts and recordings, Tambuco is one of the finest percussion quartets performing today. Among many honours and awards, they are the first non-Japanese artists to receive the Japan Foundation Award for Culture. Tambuco has toured across Latin America, Asia, Europe, the Middle East, the United States and Canada. Recently, they toured with the Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra in the great concert halls of Europe, featuring Javier Álvarez's percussion concerto, and they showcased at the 2018 WAA conference. 

2019 sees Tambuco premiering Gabriela Ortiz's Los Angeles Philharmonic commission Yanga, for orchestra, choir, and percussion ensemble, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel to celebrate the orchestra's centennial year. They will also headline at PASIC in Indianapolis and will hold the Jean Wentworth Music Residency at Sarah Lawrence College. Tambuco will be returning to tour throughout the USA in October of 2020.

Dans leur Mexique natal et dans le monde entier, Tambuco est connu pour son répertoire unique et ses performances vibrantes à en couper le souflle. De percussions corporelles aux instruments de percussions modernes, l'approche sonore de Tambuco vise la viruosité rhythmée; une expérience viscérale et grandement agréable. 

Avec plus de 25 ans de performances à l'international, Tambuco est un des meilleurs quatuors de percussions à se présenter sur scène aujourd'hui. Parmi de nombreux honneurs et récompenses, ils ont été les premiers artistes non-japonais à recevoir le Japan Foundation Award for Culture. Tambuco a été en tournée à travers l'Amérique Latine, l'Asie, l'Europe, le Moyen-Orient, les États-Unis et le Canada. Récemment, ils ont été en tournée avec le Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra dans les plus grandes salles d'Europe, présentant le concerto de percussion de Javier Álvarez' concerto. Ils ont aussi participé aux vitrines officielles de la conférence de WAA en 2018. 

En 2019 Tambuco interprètera en primeur mondiale Yanga de Gabriela Ortiz avec le Los Angeles Philharmonic sous la direction de Gustavo Dudamel lors du concert célébrant le centenaire de l'orchestre. Ils seront également en vedette à PASIC (Indianapolis) et seront en résidence au Jean Wentworth Music Residency et au Sarah Lawrence College. Tambuco sera de retour en tournée aux États-Unis en automne 2020.

Programmes and projects

Yanga by Gabriela Ortiz


Yanga tells the story Gaspar Yanga, an African prince captured and taken to Mexico as a slave in the 1500s. He led a revolt and founded the first independent settlement in the Americas, San Lorenzo de los Negros, thereby becoming the first black ruler in America. 

More information

Learn more about Gabriela Ortiz




“What mesmerizing creativity,! A Tour de Force of subtle and forceful artistry. The members of Tambuco are chameleons on dozens of instruments.” 



“The timpanist Ricardo Gallardo and his three Tambuco associates are kept busy, but even in pieces like "Xochipilli, an Imaginary Aztec Music" or the Partita for Solo Timpani, a sense of neatness hangs over such naturally theatrical opportunities.” 

—  Bernard Holland



“Great virtuosity and theatricality of Tambuco. Put Ben-Dor and her enthusiasms  together with players of this caliber and Santa Barbara could really produce a world-class festival...On this occasion Kronos Quartet was joined by  Mexico City percussion ensemble Tambuco. Very impressive!” 

—  Mark Swed