The Florida Guitar Foundation has just wrapped up their third season. The last concert of the season featured Rafael Padron, the Artistic Director of the Florida Guitar Foundation and Classical Guitar Program Director at the University of Miami. At a sold out show, Rafael Padron played compositions by Augustin Barrios Mangore to a packed house. You can say he played to an overflowing house as patrons had to stand once all the seats were taken.
Photograph courtesy of The Florida Guitar Foundation
I discovered the Florida Guitar Foundation just in time to attend Rafael Padron’s performance. I can say it was a heart felt and riveting experience. Each composition sounded as if it were being interpreted from the Maestro’s very soul. So much so, that Mr. Padron had difficulty speaking to the audience between pieces because he was overwhelmed by the emotions that take over when he plays the guitar. The audience can feel those emotions resulting in a unique connection with the performer.
The Beginning of The Florida Guitar Foundation
Four years ago, Federico Musgrove, Executive Director of the Florida Guitar Foundation, was looking for a way to create more opportunities to appreciate classical guitar in our community. This led Federico to establish The Florida Guitar Foundation. The organization’s goal is to advance the knowledge and appreciation of classical guitar in Florida. Since then, The Florida Guitar Foundation has been bringing renowned classical guitarists from around the world to perform at local venues.
The Florida Guitar Foundation is going to kick off their 2015-2016 season with a major bang. The first concert of the season brings the world famous Los Angeles Guitar Quartet to the University of Miami for what promises to be an extraordinary musical event. The concert will be on October 25, 2015 at the Gusman Concert Hall at the University of Miami Coral Gables campus. Everyone at the Foundation is expecting this show to sell out quickly. We will keep you posted so that you can grab your tickets as soon as they become available.
Join The Guitar Ensemble
Another of The Florida Guitar Foundation’s goals is to create opportunities for local guitarists to get to know one another and perform in front of audiences. The guitar ensemble is a big part of the organization’s community involvement. All ages and skill levels are welcome to participate in the ensemble. It is a great opportunity to get together with other people and play music written specifically for classical guitar. Opportunities for classical guitarists to play in an ensemble don’t really exist outside of a college setting. Perhaps this is why interest in the ensemble has grown steadily since its inception. If you are a guitarist interested in participating in the ensemble you should become a member of the foundation. To become a member visit their website www.floridaguitarfoundation.org/members
Classical Guitar Open Mic Night
The Florida Guitar Foundation holds a monthly classical guitar open mic night. Any member of the community can perform classical guitar pieces in front of a friendly audience. The atmosphere is very relaxed and welcoming – everyone wants you to perform well. This monthly event will be held at the Miami Conservatory of Music in Coconut Grove. If you are interested in performing at the open mic night, contact Dan at firstname.lastname@example.org. All they need to know is your name and the piece you are performing and you’re in!
It’s important for any musician to perform in front of an audience because it is very difficult and intense when you first begin. Dan Shearouse, Outreach Coordinator for the Florida Guitar Foundation believes, “it is a good life experience and a good training exercise. The more you play in front of a crowd, the easier it gets”. To find out more information and the specific dates of the open mic nights visit the Florida Guitar Foundation website: www.floridaguitarfoundation.org
Become a Member
The Florida Guitar Foundation is run entirely by volunteers. There are some very talented people involved in the organization including Federico Musgrove, Corey Harvin, Rafael Padron, Daniel Shearouse, and many others. You can become a member of the foundation for as little as $40 a year. Membership includes reduced performance ticket prices, the ability to join the ensemble, and more. Support the community of classical guitarists in Florida. To become a member visit their website www.floridaguitarfoundation.org/members