What made me fall in love with music was my experience as a child listening to the Guarneri String Quartet.
My family moved a lot when I was growing up, and one constant in my life was that no matter wherever we lived, the Guarneri would be there, on one of their stops on tour.
Going to those concerts sparked in me a passion for the sound of a string quartet and of each instrument, particularly the viola, of course.
The violist of the quartet, Michael Tree, was always gracious in talking to my dad and me after concerts. He had a sparkle in his eye and an engaging manner on and off stage. At that impressionable age, I knew I wanted to be a violist like Michael Tree!
Those Guarneri String Quartet performances have really stayed with me throughout my life.
Melia Watras, violist
Published by ALL ABOUT THE ARTS
Rafael de Acha has enjoyed a distinguished career in the arts as a performer, stage director, producer, and educator. He was born and grew up in Cuba. At the age of 17 he moved to the United States to study Drama at the University of Minnesota, and later Languages at L.A. City College, Music at the Juilliard School of Music, at the University of Cincinnati’s College Conservatory of Music, and at the New England Conservatory of Music, from which he received the Master's degree. He has taught courses on the History of Music at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music and at Florida International University, and contributed writings and reviews to Seen and Heard International (www.seenandheard-international.com ) and to this blog. He co-founded the award-winning New Theatre in Coral Gables, Florida, where he produced and staged twenty seasons of classical and contemporary theater, including fifty world premieres of plays that went on to have international and national productions on and off Broadway, including Ana in the Tropics by Nilo Cruz (Pulitzer Prize for Drama 2002 and Tony Nomination 2003.) In 2006 he was presented with a citation from The Dade County Cultural Affairs Council for “trailblazing contributions to the arts in South Florida.”
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