FIU Music Festival brings world-renowned musicians to Miami, creates opportunities for students


This October 26 – November 10, the FIU School of Music will welcome over 50 high caliber guest artists from top universities and ensembles from the United States and abroad in curated performances with FIU’s preeminent Artists-in-Residence and student ensembles for the 2018 FIU Music Festival.

This year’s festival will feature 13 culturally diverse and engaging performances from a variety of musicians from The Juilliard School, the Los Angelos Philharmonic, the FIU Symphony Orchestra, the FIU Music Festival Orchestra, the FIU Studio Jazz Big Band, the Raices Jazz Orchestra and more. With over 200 musicians performing in 13 days, the festival becomes a laboratory for music students who are able to work with renowned musicians in preparation for life after graduation.

GRAMMY award-winning clarinetist and saxophonist Paquito D’ Rivera with orchestra students during the 2017 FIU Music Festival


As a training ground for emerging musicians, students participate in master classes, coachings, and festival concerts, often performing onstage and side-by-side with festival ensembles and artists.

“The FIU Music Festival is the connection to the professional world like no other,” says Karen S. Fuller-Veloz, the festival’s artistic director. “It provides students with the opportunity to rub shoulders with giants in the music industry on a global landscape. The best musicians are brought in with the students and Miami community in mind.”

Not only do the students learn performance techniques from internationally acclaimed musicians, but they prepare, produce, and manage the festival with the support of the faculty. Here, students develop their entrepreneurial acumen and fluency in music management while being in a nurturing, supportive environment.

Graduate student Meraises Miranda helped to arrange rehearsals and schedules in addition to singing onstage with Nestor Torres during the 2017 festival.


Graduate student Meraises Miranda has been the production manager for the festival for the last two years. “Being able to produce concerts and the festival from to finish is so incredible. Usually, students never get the opportunity to handle the pre-production and planning for the shows, oversee the execution of the final product, and see it all the way through. It’s such a great learning experience.”

Named the “Most Welcome Revival” by South Florida Classical Review in 2016, the festival continues to promote a culture of excellence within FIU and the South Florida community.

Festival partners include the Dranoff International 2 Piano Foundation, the FIU Alumni Association, Friends of Collegiate Music, and the American Guild of Organists. It is funded in part by the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs and OceanBank.

The festival opens Friday, October 26, at 7:30pm p.m. at the Wertheim Performing Arts Center with Grammy-nominated Alfredo Rodriguez Trio and the FIU Jazz Big Band and runs through Saturday, Nov 10.

Here’s the rundown:

  • Oct. 26: Grammy® Nominated Alfredo Rodriguez Trio & FIU Jazz Big Band
  • Oct. 27: The FIU Symphony Orchestra Halloween Concert features frightfully fun symphonic music for the whole family! Bring your ghosts and goblins for trick-or-treating at the spooky Wertheim Concert Hall.
  • Oct. 28: Top Ukrainian piano duo Olha Chipak & Oleksiy Kushnir and vocalists Amanda Crider, Susan Hellman, Jonathan Beyer and Tyler Nelson, perform Ode to Joy, Symphony No. 9, and a premiere of Robert Chumbley’s “Cries and Whispers.” Presented with The Dranoff International 2 Piano Foundation.
  • Oct. 30: Steinway Artist and pianist Jenny Lin, acclaimed by “The New York Times” as “remarkable…one of the most interesting pianists in America right now” performs Philip Glass Etudes and works by Shostakovich, Ustvolskaya, & FIU’s own composer-in-residence Orlando Jacinto Garcia.
  • Nov. 1: FIU Meets Juilliard with famed pianist Joseph Kalichstein & FIU’s acclaimed Artists-in-Residence Amernet String Quartet.
  • Nov. 2: FIU Meets Juilliard with renowned clarinetist John Manasse & Amernet String Quartet.
  • Nov. 3: The Camerata Antonio Soler, a multi-stylistic chamber orchestra from Madrid, presents an evening of Spanish classics.
  • Nov. 4: FIU Artist-in-Residence and Pianist Kemal Gekic & musicologist Frank Cooper team up for an intimate afternoon of Hector Berlioz’s transcription of ‘Symphonie fantastique’!
  • Nov 6: Westminster Abbey’s own organist Thomas Trotter plays FIU’s crown jewel, the Sydell Ida Wertheim Organ.
  • Nov. 7: FIU’s Artist-in-Residence and violinist Robert Davidovici performs with Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Robert DeMaine and Israeli pianist Ilana Vered in an evening of chamber music greats.
  • Nov. 8: Netherland’s Duo Hevans with Henri Bok and Ann Evans perform an eclectic evening of chamber music with four world premieres.
  • Nov. 9: FIU Alumnus and Latin Grammy Award nominee Tony Succar, saxophonist Pablo Gil, & Raices Jazz Orchestra will wow audiences with an exciting fusion of Latin Rhythms and Big Band Jazz.
  • Nov. 10: Spain’s own Camerata Antonio Soler, FIU faculty-artists, FIU Festival Orchestra, and giants from around the world come together a smashing evening of classics & contemporary featuring Kemal Gekic in Fredrick Kaufman’s South Florida premiere of Guernica.

Buy your tickets online at, by calling (305) 348-0496, or by emailing Discounts available.


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