B i o g r a p h y
As performers, Carlos & Brennen are taking a decidedly different approach to entertaining classical music lovers in the Sacramento region. “We hope to bring a new awareness to non-traditional music,” says Brennen. “We aim to go beyond the well-known composers and pieces by choosing works that are fresh and new, both to us and our audiences. We will also feature original music we composed.” Some of the composers in their repetoire include Wilson Osborne, Leonard Bernstein, George Gershwin, and local composer Cody Bennett.
Most recently Carlos & Brennen just returned from delivering a lecture recital on How to Overcome Stage Fright at the National Association for Negro Musicians at their 99th annual convention at the Tropicana Las Vegas.
In March of this year Carlos & Brennen won first prize in the Chamber Music Group C at the Golden Classical Music Awards. As part of their prize the Golden Classical Music Awards invited Carlos & Brennen to perform at Carnegie Hall this March. They are excited to bring their music to a wider audience through their public performances.
These accomplished African-American artists began performing as a duo in 2016. They have performed together at the Brickhouse Art Gallery, the E. Claire Raley Studios for the Performing Arts auditorium (CLARA), Westminster Presbyterian Church, as well as the Sacramento International Airport. They enjoy performing for Sacramento Audiences.
Through their performances, Carlos and Brennen also hope to highlight the experience of minorities in the arts, while conveying uplifting social messages. “We aim to provoke thought and communicate the ideas of peace, tolerance, and unity,” says Brennen. “These universal values are embodied in all the themes for our positive celebrations of music and life,” says Carlos.
Both Carlos and Brennen perform on traditional orchestral instruments to present an exciting tonal experience to their audience. While upholding tradition in that sense, the duo is not afraid to bring the scores to life in their own distinct style. “We want people to go home thinking the music was both touching and passionate,” says Brennen.
Both Carlos and Brennen earn their livelihoods as dedicated music instructors in the local community. Carlos teaches elementary school students, and Brennen provides individual private instruction.
More about Carlos:
Carlos McMillan Fuentes is a composer, singer- songwriter, and classically-trained pianist. He earned his Bachelor of Music degree in Music Composition with a focus in Piano Performance from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in May 2011.
He has written many works including a choral symphony, three concertos, three short film scores, chamber works, choral works, songs, and solo piano pieces. Additionally, he is the lyricist for most of his original songs – eclectic works that bridge his classical background with influences from American pop, jazz, gospel, R&B/soul, and musical theatre. His admiration for the masters – Chopin, Scriabin, Brahms, and Mahler are among his favorites – is only matched by his love for Michael Jackson, Patrick Wolf, Lady Gaga, and Janelle Monáe, modern-day masters in their fields.
More about Brennen:
Award winning clarinetist, Brennen Milton, has performed in Sacramento, throughout the United State, and abroad. He has collaborated with highly skilled and accomplished musicians from around the world, and strives to bring an excellent musical experience to all through performances, coaching, and teaching.
In April of 2016 Brennen performed solo at Carnegie Hall in New York City, where the Inter Harmony International Music Festival invited him to perform Debussy's Premier Rhapsody in a recital. Mr. Milton first performed as orchestral soloist in October of 2015 with California State University Sacramento's Symphony Orchestra. They featured him as soloist for their first concert of their 2015-2016 season. For the audition and the final performance Brennen performed Debussy's Premiere Rhapsodie, which Debussy scored in two versions: one for Clarinet and Orchestra and another for Clarinet and Piano.
In 2014 the International Lyric Academy offered Brennen a scholarship to perform as part of their Opera orchestra as well as with the Tuscia Opera Festival Orchestra. They featured him as a part of their festival chamber music series where he performed Brahms’ Sonate for Piano and Clarinet (Op. 120 No.2) and his beloved Clarinet Quintet (Op. 115). Brennen returned to Italy in 2015 when he was invited to participate in the Inter harmony International Music Festival. In July of 2016 Brennen performed to a sold out crowd with Michael Dale of Sacramento for the Crocker Art Museum's Classical Music Series featuring American Composers.