Del Sol String Quartet

Daniel Ward

Daniel Ward has been active in music for over 20 years. He holds a degree in classical guitar performance from the University of New Mexico (1990) and is trained in jazz, flamenco, and most world music. His interest in composition began in college. Since then Daniel has been a professional guitarist, moving fluidly between classical, flamenco, jazz, world and pop music. During the late 1990s he toured the world with pop flamenco artist, Ottmar Liebert, and in 2005 he performed as flamenco guitarist for the Santa Fe Opera’s premiere of Osvaldo Golijov’s “Ainadamar.” Daniel’s CD, “After the Storm” (2005), features all original compositions and his own style of flamenco-fusion. He also has written music for radio and TV and is a highly skilled recording engineer.
Most recently, Daniel has returned to writing for modern classical ensembles, penning works for string quartet, solo instruments, and percussion, as well as new material for piano. His compositions draw from every musical style to which he has been exposed and combine modern, traditional and folk harmony with ethnic rhythms.
Daniel Ward has been an active part of music for over 20 years. He holds a performance degree in classical guitar from the University of New Mexico, and is trained in jazz, flamenco, and most world music. His performance experience with dancers includes national tours with Pablo Rodarte and Eva Encinias, work with Maria Benitez, and most recently, the powerful stage productions “Cabaret Ole” and Fuego Flamenco
Daniel has also been performing jazz and all types of pop music since 1985. His experience includes the Telluride jazz celebration (with world beat group “Caribe”), national and international corporate entertainment with “The Pink Flamingos”, extensive work with local groups and the New Mexico Jazz Workshop, and toured as a member of Ottmar Liebert’s group “Luna Negra” between 1997 and 2000.
Daniel is as comfortable being a soloist as he is playing within a group, and has wide recording experience as well. His guitar work can be heard on many soundtracks, commercials and CDs, including Robbie Robertson’s TNT special and CD. Recent television appearances include a special for the BRAVO! channel with Ottmar Liebert, Sessions on west 54th ST in New York, and the San Remo Music Festival in Italy.
When he is not traveling, Daniel spends time performing and recording with local artists, writing music for PBS television in NM, and is currently offering his new CD “After the Storm”. He also recently played with the Santa Fe Opera orchestra in the 2005 season as the flamenco guitarist for Osvaldo Golijov’s Opera “Ainadamar”.
“These Walls” (2011)
“These Walls” (December 2011) was commissioned by the Del Sol Quartet. The original inspiration for the piece came from a single unfinished melody that I wrote while studying composition in college. It is the opening statement by the solo cello. This melody has haunted me for years, and I was delighted when the piece started to reveal itself in my mind’s ear one phrase at a time.
I quickly realized that the music had a depth of feeling that was related to experiences I have had in my travels … places I have been. Castles and cathedrals in Europe, sacred caves and kivas in New Mexico, Greek amphitheaters, and old houses my relatives lived in were all sources of rich emotion from childhood to the present. All of these places had a story for me. Some were of old ghosts and events; some were as simple as a smell or texture. I think all of us have experiences that have come from being within the walls of a place where there is history. The phrase “If these walls could speak” comes to mind. Well, they did… and this is what it sounded like.
“La Sangre de la Luna” (2010)
This piece is inspired by the cycles of the moon, and the all the different passions and emotions it creates in all of us, whether we notice where it comes from or not…
The rhythm and harmony draw heavily from flamenco, but the music itself “floats” above the traditional pulse of the flamenco buleriasand solea por bulerias and is not intended to be viewed as a “flamenco work” for string quartet. It is simply a short piece inspired by many elements and layered together with modern classical as well as jazz harmonies, texture changes, and some traditional classical elements of form that weave recurring themes into the piece. Spanish infused world modern cuisine for the ears… Bon Appetite!!


© Del Sol Performing Arts Organization • Photos by RJ Muna