Former Director of the School of Music Joins Miami Beach Urban Studios as Composer-in-Residence


Evan Northup from Miami Beach Urban Studios writes about composer Orlando Garcia’s move to this hip, urban space on Lincoln Road.

Dr. Garcia recently retired from the post of Director of FIU’s School of Music after a hugely successful tenure of four and a half years. In a whirlwind tour of global music, Garcia spent the early part of summer of 2014 in residence at MacDowell Colony in New Hampshire, where he completed two chamber works, one for premiere in Assisi, Italy in July (Suono Sacro ensemble) and the other for premiere in Madrid, Spain in November (Nuevo Ensemble de Segovia). Then he traveled to Elba, Italy, where he was been writing a new work for piano duo (Bugallo Williams Piano Duo). From Elba, he journeyed back to Assisi for the Suono Sacro Festival to conduct the premiere of the work written at the MacDowell Colony.

Garcia frequently spends his summer months composing and traveling, as in 2013 he spent time at the Civitella Ranieri Foundation Center in Umbria, Italy. The foundation offered a grant to Dr. Garcia to create a new work for the Miami Symphony Orchestra and the Latin American String Quartet called “Towards the Light into the Numinous,” which is dedicated to the memory of his late wife, Catherine, and is scheduled to premiere in the 2014-2015 season. The residency was a series of four six-week sessions that were held in a 15th century castle which allows a community of 12-14 accomplished artists, writers, and composers to engage in robust dialogue and to refresh one’s work.

For the rest of this summer and the upcoming fall semester, Dr. Garcia will be continuing his world music tour with a three week Artist- in-Residency in Tuscany for the Festival in Assisi (July – Sacred Sounds), conducting a premier in New Hampshire, and offering research assignments, lectures, and concerts in Mexico, Poland, Spain, and the West Coast of the United States. One of his other exciting projects will be when he visits upstate New York’s Millay Colony in August to work on an interdisciplinary opera that will be a cultural collaboration, and which will include creative input by Chair of Art History Jacek Kolasinksi, Associate Professor of Architecture Eric Goldemberg, and Professor of English Campbell McGrath, as well as MBUS’s own Director, John Stuart.

After his thrilling and extensive schedule for the summer and fall, Dr. Garcia will begin his time at the Miami Beach Urban Studios in the spring semester. One of his main goals is to incorporate the New Music Miami Festival (which he created and continues to oversee) into the MBUS programming schedule, and hold approximately ten to twelve concerts over the Spring academic term. In his words, “as the composer in residence at our Miami Beach Urban Studios I will be creating and curating new works to be presented at the Studios by our faculty, students, and guest artists and ensembles, bringing additional visibility to the space while continuing my work as a composer nationally and internationally.”

We are incredibly excited and honored to welcome Dr. Garcia into our creative and innovative space here at MBUS, and we look forward to the inspirational vision and work he will achieve.

For more information on Dr. Garcia and his calendar of events, please click here.

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