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Festival Miami showcases multicultural rhythms

Annual music event to feature dean, students

By: Joshua Newman and Brittnay Starks // Contributing News Writers

Issue date: 7/8/08 Section: News
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Fans snapped their fingers and tapped their feet as the "swinging Brazilian jazz machine," Nosso Trio, jammed through the evening. They also danced to the rhythmic beat of salsa music performed by Hansel Y La Orquesta Calle Ocho, and treated themselves to a performance of Haydn's "The Creation" by the Frost Symphony Orchestra and Frost Choral. Whatever the choice, music lovers enjoyed a culturally diverse musical setting at last fall's 24th annual Festival Miami.

The festival, founded in 1984 by William Hipp, former dean of the Frost School of Music, has drawn in music followers from all over South Florida for the past 23 years. Serving as an educational and entertainment forum, Festival Miami offers live performances by jazz, classical and Latin musicians from around the world, including award-winning staff, faculty and students of the university.

Shelton "Shelly" Berg, the Frost School's dean, were among last year's performers. As a world-renowned jazz pianist, conductor, composer and arranger, Berg has collaborated with a wide array of artists, including KISS and Ray Charles.

In his Oct. 11 performance, Berg joined forces with the Bergonzi String Quartet, Luciano Magnanini and Don Coffman, all of whom are faculty members of the university.

"This festival is a great cross-section of just about every type of music, featuring everything from world-renowned outside performers, to our own world-renowned faculty, to our very best students," Berg said. "I look forward to the mixture of all those people coming together and bringing great culture to this campus."

Many students were curious to find out what Berg could do.

"He's the dean of the music school, so he should be an awesome musician," sophomore flutist Alyssa Kassler said. "I think he's setting a really good example. It makes me want to perform. Next year, I want to do Festival Miami."

Joshua Newman may be contacted at j.newman4@umiami.edu and Brittnay Starks may be contacted at b.starks@umiami.edu.
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