Martin De Leon
Martín’s beginnings date back to the 70’s in Buenos Aires, with the café-concert movement, alongside Miguel Saravia (his first backer), Opus 4, Cacho Tirao, Vinícius de Moraes, Maria Creuza, among others. In 1975 he arrived in the United States, hired by the Café Latinoamericano of Manhattan. He appeared alongside Facundo Cabral, Ginamaría Hidalgo and maestro Sabicas. By that time he used to sing the songs of Joan Manuel Serrat, Alberto Cortez and his own. In 1976 he appeared at the Town Hall of New York with Los Chalchaleros and Luis Landriscina. Two years later, he made his first recital at the Carnegie Recital Hall, with the Nueva Canción Latinoamericana (New Latin American Song). In 1984 he made a tour throughout the United States with the Center for the Performing Arts. The successful recording of the song “No me llames extranjero” (Don’t Call Me A Stranger) led him to be the first Argentine artist who appeared on the stages of the Astrodome, the Coliseum and Astroworld, all of them in Houston. Back in New York, he appeared at the Summer Festival in the World Trade Center, sharing the bill with Tito Puente. Later, two recitals at the no less famous Village Gate with the show Tango y candombe, conducted by Jorge López Ruiz. The following year he continued with Tango at the Village Gate directed by Rodolfo Alchourrón which introduced Charlie Palmieri as guest artist. He was picked up by Astor Piazzolla to perform María de Buenos Aires, and he as well appeared in the United Nations for the Gardel’s 100th Anniversary. Since then he has devoted to tango, sponsored by Alberto Castillo, Alberto Podestá and Alberto Echagüe. He appeared as featured artist in the program Tiempo for the WABC Channel 7 of New York. In New York he took part of a tribute to maestro Astor Piazzolla, in 1992, appearing alongside Al Di Meola, Dino Saluzzi and Gerry Mulligan, in which he sang with the quintet led by maestro Raúl Jaurena. Thanks to Jaurena he made his dream come true when he sang María de Buenos Aires with the Pan American Symphony Orchestra of Washington. He came back to Argentina in 1993 and appeared alongside Rubén Juárez, Alba Solís and Raúl Lavié at the Café Homero. In 1994 he traveled to Japan where he made appearances for over two months. In 1995, with Lavié, he made a tour of the interior of the country which included, among others, the cities of Córdoba and Bahía Blanca –his hometown- where they appeared in TV programs on Channel 9 of that city, and sang “Balada para un loco” teaming up as a duo. Time later, he sang in Miami, at the famous Club Tropigala of the Hotel Hilton, when the Jean Cartier Gold Awards were given to the outstanding figures of the Latin show, accompanied on piano by Mariano Mores. That same year he was appointed Visitante Ilustre of Florida at the Festival Argentino. Also in Miami, he appeared at the Primer Festival del Tango along with Argentino Ledesma, Horacio Deval, Alberto Podestá and Jorge Valdez, among other figures, and he was appointed Revelation of the Festival. His appearances in Central America and Latin America were important. In 1999 he made a tour of Canada as member of the Tango Vivo company. In 2000 he joined Tango Dreams and appeared in many cities of the United States and, in 2001, he made a tour of Israel. Also that year he impersonated Carlos Gardel in El día que me quieras, by José Ignacio Cabrujas, with the Teatro Leído of Los Ángeles. So he continued appearing in the northern hemisphere of the continent, singing in New Mexico with Tango Dreams and the Orquesta Sinfónica de San Diego, show that was reprised at the Long Beach Arena in California that same year. In October 2005, Martín joined the cast of Forever Tango. In September 2013 he closed the season with that company in Broadway. In 2014 he presented his symphonic work with the Orquesta Nacional de Ecuador and the Sinfónica de Cuenca. Furthermore, he was invited as member of the board and singer at the Festival de Tango de Pereira, Colombia. He was also member of the board and singer at the International Festival of Medellín and made a new appearance singing tangos with the Pan American Symphony Orchestra of Washington. Finally, it is a standout his recital Tango Sinfónico in Quito, with the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional of that country and, in April 2016, he reprised it with the Pan American Symphony of Washington.