Renowned on-campus music festival kicks off

Courtesy Frost Music School

This fall, the Frost School of Music will host its annual concert series, Festival Miami, which brings an eclectic mixture of style, culture and world-class talent to the University of Miami campus.

Festival Miami presents about 20 concerts in the Maurice Gusman Concert Hall and the Victor E. Clarke Recital Hall that features styles ranging from Latin, pop and Motown to classical, jazz and bluegrass.

Every year, artists come from across the world to perform, as well from within UM’s own Frost School of Music faculty and students. Many of the performers also held master classes available for any student to attend.

“For students, they get to roll out of bed, walk across campus and see a world-class concert,” said Shelly Berg, dean of the Frost School of Music, adding that many of the concerts are free or discounted for students.

Students enjoy Festival Miami because of the diverse talent.

“[One visiting composer] has his masters from Julliard, is the composer in residence for the Chicago Symphony and works a night job as a DJ,” Mulligan said about Mason Bates, a performer at last year’s Festival Miami.

Other artists at Festival Miami 2010 included a Grammy Award-winning folk violinist, a long-established South Florida dance company, a composer/guitarist for feature film scores and the writer of 54 No. 1 Motown hits for artists such as The Supremes and Marvin Gaye.

Traditionally, Festival Miami has brought a wide variety of musical styles and talents to UM.

“There’s a little bit of everything for everyone,” said Mariane Mijares, director of events for the Frost School of Music.

The concert series, which has run annually since 1984 and has brought hundreds of renowned performers to the UM campus, takes over a year to plan and is programmed by faculty from every department in the Frost School. This year, Festival Miami will take place October 1-November 4.

Currently scheduled acts for Festival Miami 2011 include Grammy award-winning Latin singer Willy Chirino, wind quintet Imani Winds, Miami-based band Suenalo, jazz singer-songwriter Livingston Taylor and the U.S. Marine Corp Band.