Bachata Academy @ DREAM faculty

Manuel Reynoso ‘Riki’, Guitar

A rising star in today’s bachata scene and a founding member of the Bachata Academy, Riki is one of the Dominican Republic’s finest guitarists. After learning to play guitar in his church orchestra, Riki went on to work with various bachata groups around his home town of Bonao. He was picked up in his early 20s by bachata legend Ramón Cordero, who has tutored him in the fine guitar finger-picking techniques of traditional bachata. Riki has gone on to accompany some of the Dominican Republic’s most popular singers, and he continues to perform regularly with Ramon.

Manuel Molina, voice

A native of Paris, France, Manuel Molina possesses a vocal technique unrivaled by most popular music singers these days. With studies in conservatories in Paris and Aix en Provence, Manuel went on to graduate from the world renowned Paris-Sorbonne University. After obtaining his degree, he immersed himself in all the different genres he could, including classical, folk, pop and rock. Manuel has toured the world as a musician, as well as a choir and orchestra conductor, and has recorded albums for BMG and Universal. His musical journey finally brought him to the Dominican Republic, where he currently works on classical repertoire with lyric mezzo-soprano Angela Grifo Cruz, directs the Sosua Choral Society, and teaches voice at DREAM.

Abel Martinez Mendez ‘Abelito’, percussion

Abelito is one of the Dominican Republic’s finest percussionists. Born in San Felipe, Abelito studied percussion from a young age under the tutelage of renown percussionist, Professor Almanza. He later enrolled in the Luis E. Mena Academy, where he studied with Professor Caonabo among others. Abelito began playing bachata in the late 1970s as a guira and bongos player for Ramón Cordero, Junior y Jorge, Nelson Paredes, and he later joined Los Hermanos Paredes, led by the bachata legends Edilio Paredes. Abelito was a founding member of Monchy y Alexandra, a Grammy nominated group, and a winner of multiple Billboard music awards. Abelito has gone on to play and record with almost every well-known bachata artist. Currently, he plays and tours extensively with several projects, including Luis Segura’s band.


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