By Enide Dufresne, Miami Music Project
The Miami Music Project String Quintet made a remarkable impression with their three concerts on May 21st, 22nd and 24th for the prestigious Festival de Saint-Denis/Métis in Paris, France.
They captured the very essence of Miami, by presenting a rich repertoire influenced by North American, Cuban, Haitian, Brazilian and Venezuelan cultures. The program highlighted works by outstanding composers such as Jessie Montgomery from the United States; Aldemaro Romero, Juan Bautista Plaza and Leo Blanco from Venezuela, and a set of commissioned adaptations of Cuban, Haitian and Brazilian folk songs exquisitely arranged by Miami Music Project Teaching Artist Alex Berti.
Composer Leo Blanco said he was “very proud to have ‘The South of Strings’ performed at Saint-Denis [Métis] Festival by the Miami Music Project String Quintet.”
Reaching the high expectation set by the Festival’s historical track record of high caliber professional musicians posed a nerve-racking challenge for the quintet. They were the only youth ensemble invited and, added to that, the only ensemble to represent the United States. Yet, in what amounted to a performance of Olympic proportions for the group, they made their country proud! Their final performance was punctuated by a standing ovation and two encores, including Chano Pazo’s famous “Manteca,” at the demanding chants of the French audience.
The ensemble is comprised of the cream of the crop of the Miami Music Project Youth Orchestra string section: Sage McBride (Broward Virtual School) 16, violin I; Ana Luna Uribe (Miami Arts Charter) 18, violin II; Srivishnu Ramankutty (New World School of the Arts) 17, viola; Santiago Luna (Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School) 17, cello; and Adriel Lyles, 22 who substituted for Kebra-Seyoun Charles (New World School of the Arts) 17, double bass.
Mentoring by composers, conductors and professional musicians helped the quintet reach success, including renowned violinist Igor Gruppman, acclaimed Amernet String Quartet, sought-after composer Alex Berti, and founder of Miami Music Project, James Judd.
Miami Music Project’s Program Director Abiram Brizuela, who has guided the quintet through its musical journey from the beginning, said, “Every single extra hour of rehearsal was worth it. The quintet has come back to the United States with a new standard of musical quality and a higher bar for young musicians of Miami to reach.
Listen to the quintet perform locally! Attend Miami Music Project’s Fantastic Season Finale on Saturday, June 7th, 1:00 PM & 7:00 PM at FIU’s Herbert and Nicole Wertheim Performing Arts Center 10910 SW 17th St., Miami, FL 33199. The Miami Music Project String Quintet performs at the 7:00 PM show.
To get more information, email [email protected].
Click here to see more photos of the quintet.
Arts / Article