Hugo Alexander Cruz Machado is a Cuban-born, award winning, internationally renowned drummer who has performed in South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Mexico, Venezuela, and the United States. He is the leader of the group Caminos, which had its Pittsburgh debut at the Pittonkatonk festival in May 2019, where they performed rhythms of the African diaspora and Cuban music for thousands.
While a resident of Cuba, Hugo toured regularly with Síntesis, a leading Afrocuban rock-fusion group with traditional influences. He won the award as the “best drummer” at the “festival de tambor” at the Guillermo Barreto in Memoriam, Havana, Cuba. While performing with Síntesis, the group won a special award at Cubadisco in 2019, Cuba’s equivalent of the Grammys. Hugo has performed in Cuba’s largest jazz festival, Jazz Plaza, in Havana, Cuba, with acclaimed artists Dave Weckl and Victor Goines. He is a graduate of University of ISA (Instituto superior de artes) of Havana, Cuba, the leading arts university in the country. He has recorded with many of Cuba’s leading musicians, such as Sintesis, Aire de concierto, Adrian Berazain, Zule Guerra, Mayco de Alma, among others. In Pittsburgh, Hugo performs with several projects, including the Afro Yaqui Music Collective, and has been a guest teaching artist at the Afro American Music Institute and the University of Pittsburgh.