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A portrait photo Panamanian of saxophonist Samuel Batista looking straight at the camera and holding his alto saxophone.


Panamanian saxophonist, composer, and educator Samuel Batista mixes Panamanian folkloric and urban music with jazz. His latest album, Panama United, featuring Anthony Fung (drums), Eunjeong Hwong (piano) and James Dale (bass) covers traditional Panamanian rhythms within his original compositions, aiming to preserve Panamanian folklore while documenting his firsts travels in the United States. 

In 2012, he was admitted with a full scholarship to the Berklee College of Music, where he earned a double degree in Performance and Jazz Composition. During these years of study, Batista had the honor of learning from some of the world's most notable musicians such as Danilo Pérez, John Patitucci, Ben Street, Joe Lovano and Marco Pignataro.


While completing his studies at Berklee, Samuel worked as coordinator of international auditions at the Panama Jazz Festival, and collaborated in educational activities as musical director, arranger and orchestrator for American vibraphonist Stefon Harris and Spanish singer Miguel Bosé. Similarly, he experienced his first international exhibitions in places such as Carnegie Hall, Small Jazz Club, Outside The Box Music Festival, Montreal Jazz Festival, and the Kriol Jazz Festival, together with artists such as Paquito D’Rivera, Zahili Gonzales Zamora, Ron Savage, Neal Smith and Antonio Hart.


While working with bassist Oscar Stagnaro and pianist and producer Alain Mallet, and drummer Mark Walker, Batista was appointed to teach at The New England Conservatory for The Preparatory Jazz School and the Continuing Education Program. His 2018 debut album, Panama United, was produced by Alain Mallet and premiered during the 19th edition of the Panama Jazz Festival along with his “Panamanian Sextet”.


In 2018, Batista returned to Panama and toured with Panamanian singer Ruben Blades while working as an educator at the Danilo Perez Foundation. After four years as a piano teacher for children ages three to five, Batista was granted a full scholarship for the graduate program at the Berklee Global Jazz Institute. 

Batista currently lives in Boston, where he is working on his upcoming album Rising to Love.

"Rising star saxophonist
Samuel Batista"

                                                             - DownBeat Magazine

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