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The Boston Globe


Miguel Zenón’s rhythms follow a changing culture

The saxophonist Miguel Zenón came from Puerto Rico to Boston to study at the Berklee College of Music in 1996, and fast emerged as a major creative voice in jazz, with a MacArthur “genius” grant in 2008 to attest to it. In his young but prolific career, he has made Puerto Rico one of his work’s running themes, exploring in several recent albums, with his quartet, its classic song canon and folkways.

With his new project, which he brings to NEC’s Jordan Hall Friday, Zenón follows this logic but takes a new tack, shifting his focus from the island itself to those who left it to come work in the United States, and their descendants. In the multimedia performance “Identities Are Changeable: Tales from the Diaspora,” he takes on a question that has fascinated him ever since his own move to the mainland.

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