Manuel Alejandro Rangel is an internationally acclaimed maracas player from Venezuela. As a soloist, he earned first place at the International Villavicencio Festival in Colombia and recently represented his home country in the Tatuí International Percussion Festival in Sao Paulo, Brazil. He contributed to the Latin Grammy-winning album Tesoros de la Música Venezolana, and released his first solo album, Instinto, in 2008. Touring throughout South America and internationally, he has shared the stage with Celia Todd, Pablo Gil, Carlos “Nen” Quintero, and Gonzalo Teppa, among others.
He received a OneBeat Accelerator grant for the creation of a 3-month online course, “5 Movements Are The Key”, outlining a systemized methodology for learning the maracas in traditional and contemporary contexts, with a breadth of learning resources including over 120 tutorial videos and PDFs. Nearly 100 participants signed up for the course, and all four chapters were completed by 35 of them, mainly from Venezuela and Colombia, with a notable percentage having never played the maracas prior to the experience. Deliverables from participants included the submission of videos demonstrating their mastery of the course content on the instrument, and participants who completed the course were awarded with a certificate of participation offered at the completion of the course. The internationally acclaimed maracas player is working on a second round of courses building up on the knowledge gained in the first course.