The National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba will perform a free concert at 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4 at the St. Augustine Amphitheatre as part of its first U.S.tour.
The presentation will signify the launch of a three-year cultural collaboration which will acknowledge the 500th Anniversary of the landing of Juan Ponce de León on the shores of Florida in 2013; the 50th Anniversary of the Civil Rights Act in 2014; and the St. Augustine 450th Commemoration in 2015.
The orchestra’s performance will be presented as a gift to the St. Augustine and St. Johns County communities from the University of Florida and its partnering organizations including Flagler College, EMMA, St. Johns Cultural Council, The St. Augustine Record, Eco Latino Magazine, St. Augustine Amphitheatre, St. Johns County Tourist Development Council,St. Augustine 450th Commemoration and VIVA Florida 500.
“As a gift to the public, the concert is a free, non-ticketed event,”University of Florida Performing Arts director Michael Blachly said. “Future performing arts events will be scheduled in conjunction with the three commemorative years through these acknowledged partnerships.”
Since its inception in 1960, the Havana-based symphony has been instrumental in developing and introducing Cuban and Latin American music to international classical music communities, in addition to covering a vast symphonic and chamber repertoire ranging from baroque to contemporary music. International tours have taken the orchestra to Russia,Poland,Yugoslavia,Mexico,Nicaragua,Spain,Peruand Argentina.
Piano soloist Ignacio “Nachito” Herrera will join the orchestra for this performance. At the age of 12, Herrera stunned audiences when he performed Rachmaninoff’s Concerto No. 2 with the ensemble. In 2009, Herrera toured as a member of the Afro-Cuban All Stars.
The orchestra will be led by guest conductor Guido Lopez-Gavilan and its program will include American, traditional European and internationally-known works.