The origin of the project

Aurora met the musicians of el Sur Mestizo in 2016, during a trip to Chile and it was musical love at first sight. She finally found the sound she was looking for with : Sebastián Gárate on cajon and percussion instruments, Juan Pablo Escares on electric guitar and sound production, Jose Villegas on acoustic guitar, and Mario Troncoso on bass/baby bass, arrangements and artistic direction.

In 2019, Aurora brought the musicians from Chile to Paris organizing several concerts, with the purpose of the recording a covers album, marking the birth of the project Aurora en el Sur Mestizo. Together they pay tribute to Afro-Peruvian and South American music with a sound identity of their own. Aurora’s deep voice is the perfect setting for this suave and elegant mixture of folklore and jazz.

Music videos directed by Merlin Pardo

The band

Aurora Alquinta

Singer

Aurora Alquinta was born in 1975 in Argentina of Chilean parents and was nurtured in France amongst the members of her father Eduardo Gato Alquinta’s band, Los Jaivas.

Aurora made her debut at the age of 15, with Peruvian boleros and waltzes. At the age of 19 she joined her first salsa band. And in 1998 she joined the women's group that would form the famous female salsa band "Yemaya la banda". 

Meanwhile in 2000, Aurora performs in the show Sol Negro created by Juan Carlos Rodriguez (Peruvian author and poet), a tribute to the great lady of Latin American music, Chabuca Granda and to Peruvian Afro music.

In 2003, after the death of her father, Eduardo "Gato" Alquinta, she inherited the role of lead singer toured with Los Jaivas, for more than 6 months and went as far as Sydney, Australia.

Becoming a versatile musician, she performed in two musicals created by the company El Duende between 2004 and 2008, In Tempo Rubato (which included a tour in Chile in 2007), and Requiem Enchanted.

Jose Villegas

Guitarist

José Villegas Monsalve, born in Santiago de Chile in 1981, began his musical studies at the age of 13, studying classical guitar for 4 seasons with maestro Martín Pino, then studied composition and arrangements at the Arcis University.

He has participated in different projects covering different styles such as Andean music, Afro-Peruvian music, fusion music and music for television.

Juan Pablo Escares Cifuentes

Guitarist

Graduate in music, composer, guitarist, arranger and music producer with vast experience.

He has worked with artists such as : La Guacha, María Colores, Sabina Odone, Juanito Ayala y Santa Feria, Aurora Alquinta, Dani Ride, Johnny Olas, Andres Reveco, La Nueva Imperial, David DeFlores, among others.

His work moves through a variety of styles, ranging from Latin music, Reggae, Urban, Ska to RockPop, always looking for personality and artistic identity in each production.

Mario Troncoso

Bass player

Graduate in Music and Instrumentalist in Electric Bass from Universidad Arcis Santiago de Chile and participated in Composition workshops of Maestro José Miguel Candela.

As a teacher he has worked in several institutions such as Universidad Arcis, Corporación Municipal de Puente Alto (Stgo de Chile), Corporación de Desarrollo de la Reina and is also a private teacher of Electric Bass, Harmony, Piano and Functional Guitar.

As a musician he has participated in Latin American popular music and Jazz groups such as : La Vitrola Jazz, Triofisis, Conpazz ( Flamenco Jazz), Tribute to Paco de Lucia, Alberto Faraggi Grupo (Flamenco fusion), Metropolitan Salsa Orchestra, Daniel Lavalle y La tribu ( Salsa ) , Negroson Orquesta, Federico Wolf ( Uruguay), Alexis Venegas( Chile) Orquesta Cubanacan, Cumbiamé, María Chalupa ( Afro-Colombian Music), « El Enganche » (Chilean Cueca).

Thanks to his interest in Afro-Peruvian music, he is a specialist in this style, standing out in collaborations with international artists such as « Cosa Nuestra » by Maestro Tito Manrique, « Juan Cotito Medrano y La Voz del Cajón » « Sentimiento Negro del Perú » and « Familia Ballumbrosio ».
He currently directs his Latin American fusion project « ZALAGARDA Experience », and is a session bassist.

Sebastien Nicolas Garate Lara

Percussionist

Chilean teacher and musician, born in the city of Santiago de Chile.

He received the title of Professor of Musical Arts in 2008 (University Vicente Pérez Rosales). He has participated in various jazz, rock and Latin jazz bands, as a drummer and percussionist. He studied the Peruvian cajon with the Peruvian teachers Rafael Santa Cruz and Alfredo Valiente,

He perfected his skills through various trips. In Argentina in 2015 where he participated in the workshop « La chacarera en el ‘’ Bombo leguero ‘’ » with the Argentine master percussionist César Elmo. In 2016, in Medellin, Colombia, where he takes classes with drummer and percussionist Juan Guillermo Aguilar Bayer « Cosito », learning Colombian drums salsa percussion course. In 2018, in Havana, Cuba, to study with Afro-Cuban percussion teacher Jose Luis Quintana « Changuito ».

Currently, he participates in the musical groups « Matuzo y el trajin » with which he has an edited album « El viaje inmóvil ». He also works as a percussionist in the « Ensamble de jazz Austral » of the Catholic University of Chile, the singer Cristobal Berru and he is the percussionist of the singer Aurora Alquinta, with whom he records an album in June 2019 in Paris France.

Find us on streaming platforms

Navigating between the repertoire of her childhood, family references and cultural transmissions, Aurora Alquinta carries in a more than charismatic way, an ambitious project that revisits the deep South American book song.

A powerful heart project brought to the forefront by today's musicians, with a deep respect for tradition and the great Latin American songs.To explore this musical poetry, Aurora en el Sur Mestizo has also called upon inspiring and inspired guest musicians such as Florian Pellissier, Sebastian Quezada, Esteban Ketterer, Judith Wekstein, Julien Matrot and Moises Alquinta.