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COMMUNITY CONCERT ASSOCIATION TO HOST NATIONAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF CUBA

FORT MYERS, FLA., February 19, 2018 – The National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba will make…

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COMMUNITY CONCERT ASSOCIATION TO HOST NATIONAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA OF CUBA

FORT MYERS, FLA., February 19, 2018 – The National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba will make a historic first appearance ever in Southwest Florida March 10 when it performs at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall.
Tickets are now on sale for the 7:30 p.m. performance, presented by the Fort Myers Community Concert Association.  Tickets may be purchased at the Barbara B. Mann Performing Arts Hall Box Office or by calling 239-481-4849.  Tickets cost $45 for orchestra seats, $35 for lower balcony seats and $25 for upper balcony seats.
“We are delighted that the National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba is performing in Southwest Florida for the first time ever.  Their performance will give local residents an appreciation of the culture and music of Cuba and Latin America,” said Community Concert Association President Mary Lee Mann.
Since its inception in 1960, The National Symphony Orchestra of Cuba has been instrumental in developing and introducing Cuban and Latin American music to the international classical music community, in addition to covering a vast symphonic and chamber repertoire ranging from baroque to contemporary music.
Tours have taken the orchestra to Russia, Yugoslavia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Spain, Peru and Argentina.  The orchestra also takes part in record productions and events in Cuba, such as the international festivals of Guitar, the festival of Contemporary Music and the international festival of ballet of Havana.
The Fort Myers Community Concert Association, now in its 69th concert season, is an all-volunteer not-for-profit organization founded by the legendary Barbara B. Mann in 1949 to bring world-class entertainment to Southwest Florida at affordable prices.  The association consists of more than 1,700 members, underwriters and sponsors.  Performers brought to Fort Myers in the past by the association include The Israel Ballet, The Boston Brass, Minnesota Orchestra, Cleveland Orchestra, Vienna Boys Choir, Flutist James Galway, Pianist Andre Watts, Violinist Joshua Bell with the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields and many others.

Tickets remain for all Red Sox Spring Training games in February

FORT MYERS, Fla. (Feb. 16, 2018) – The Boston Red Sox are back in town and…

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Tickets remain for all Red Sox Spring Training games in February

FORT MYERS, Fla. (Feb. 16, 2018) – The Boston Red Sox are back in town and gearing up to begin their spring season this week. Tickets remain for all games in February including some newly released seating locations.
 
Full team workouts begin on Monday 2/19 and are free to the public.
 
Fans can check ticket availability at www.redsox.com/tickets or visit the JetBlue Park Ticket Office from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day.
 
Home games begin Thursday, February 22 at 1p.m. with the team’s annual single admission doubleheader vs. Northeastern University followed by Boston College.  One ticket is good for both games.
 
Upcoming Grapefruit League Games this month:
Friday              2/23   1PM    vs. Minnesota Twins
Saturday          2/24   1PM    vs. Tampa Bay Rays
Sunday            2/25   1PM    vs. Baltimore Orioles
Tuesday           2/27   1PM    vs. St. Louis Cardinals
Wednesday       2/28   1PM    vs. Pittsburgh Pirates
The team will play a total of 19 home games, including 15 Grapefruit League games and two games against the Chicago Cubs on March 26 and 27 to close out the exhibition season. Red Sox Spring Training is presented by CVS Health.
 
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THE INTERNATIONAL HIT SENSATION “MAMMA MIA!” COMES TO BROADWAY PALM!

FORT MYERS, Fla – February 15, 2018 – Broadway Palm is thrilled to present the…

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THE INTERNATIONAL HIT SENSATION “MAMMA MIA!” COMES TO BROADWAY PALM!

FORT MYERS, Fla – February 15, 2018 – Broadway Palm is thrilled to present the international hit sensation MAMMA MIA! now through April 7, 2018. Over sixty million people around the world have fallen in love with the charming story, the delightful characters and the timeless ABBA music which makes Mamma Mia! the ultimate feel-good show!
 
Through ABBA’s greatest hits, Mamma Mia tells the comical story of Sophie, a bride-to-be, and her search for her birth father on a beautiful Greek island. After reading her mom’s diary, Sophie secretly invites the three men her mom wrote about to her wedding. This enchanting and unforgettable tale of love, laughter, family and friendship is set to ABBA classics including Dancing Queen, Take a Chance on Me, SOS and the title song Mamma Mia!
 
Directing and choreographing MAMMA MIA is Southwest Florida favorite, Amy McCleary. Her other director/choreographer credits at Broadway Palm include CATS, 9 to 5, Grease, White Christmas, Footloose, The Wizard of Oz, Jesus Christ Superstar, Some Enchanted Evening and Sister Act. Other directing/choreographing credits include Spamalot, Ain’t Misbehavin’, The Music Man, Peter Pan, Hairspray and the 2015 National Tour of Memphis the Musical. As a choreographer Amy’s favorite credits include Cabaret, High School Musical, Evita, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas, the second National Tour of The Wedding Singer and the current National Tour of The Wizard of Oz with Apex Touring. Most recently, Amy played Velma and choreographed Broadway Palm’s production of Chicago.
 
MAMMA MIA! is playing at Broadway Palm now through April 7, 2018. Performances are Tuesday through Sunday evenings with selected matinees. Ticket prices range from $45 to $70 with discounts for children and parties of 20 or more. Advance reservations are required and tickets can be reserved by calling (239) 278-4422, by visiting BroadwayPalm.com or by stopping by the box office at 1380 Colonial Boulevard in Fort Myers.
 

 
 
 
 
 
 

ART AND POETRY NETWORKING EVENT BRINGS SWFL CREATIVES TOGETHER EACH MONTH

February 15, 2018 - Fort Myers, FL - Calling all SWFL creatives! Gulf Coast Leisure’s…

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ART AND POETRY NETWORKING EVENT BRINGS SWFL CREATIVES TOGETHER EACH MONTH

February 15, 2018 – Fort Myers, FL – Calling all SWFL creatives! Gulf Coast Leisure’s Art and Poetry Networking Event brings together artists, musicians, writers, and more. On Thursday, March 29th at 8pm, become a part of the GCL movement and meet like-minded individuals! To register as a performer or artist, visit www.gclmovement.com. The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center is located at 2301 First St. in the historic downtown Fort Myers River District.
Gulf Coast Leisure (GCL) is an arts and entertainment company serving Southwest Florida locals and visitors alike. GCL features vibrant, creative expressions of art from individuals representing all walks of life. While their core following is the millennial market, their artistic events and community outreach touches all age groups from teens to baby boomers by creating a movement, culture, and lifestyle with their productions and products. GCL pushes the envelope within the arts community online and in person. Through events and outreach, GCL enhances the growth of a truly diverse, vibrant, and artistic culture in SWFL. GCL invites you to join the movement by partnering with GCL on promoting this electrifying arts experience.
Since 2012, Gulf Coast Leisure has developed nightlife events, summer celebrations, and community outreach by collaborating with local nonprofits. The first and longest-running event is the renowned Art & Poetry Networking event (APNE) on the fourth Thursday of the month at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. GCL started out as a need that was missing in the area that would be monthly, but more importantly, would be consistent. GCL provided the ability to self-express and be yourself on a stage in the SWFL community.
J-Bistro located in Cape Coral recognized the need to bring the community together, believed in GCL’s mission, and partnered as a their first venue. After a few months, Art and Poetry Networking Event grew past capacity just by word of mouth. APNE needed to find a space that would help the movement grow and the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center was the perfect partner. Art and Poetry Networking Event is now in its sixth year at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. Art and Poetry Networking Event is now in its sixth year at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center.
GCL then created the underground gritty version of APNE, the infamous Speak My Peace (SMP) Open Mic & Lounge. This event is eighteen and up, and is also held in the downtown Ft. Myers Historic River District at the American Legion Post 38 on the first Saturday of the month. What started as an idea over 5 years ago has become a movement. As the city and SWFL community continue to grow, so will GCL’s outreach and awareness-centered events by staying true to their mission: see SWFL residents united and inspired by the arts and quality events.
Gulf Coast Leisure’s Art and Poetry Networking Event
Thursday, March 29, 2018
8pm – 11pm • General Admission $10
For info, tickets, and artist registration, visit www.gclmovement.com.

Dr. Stephen Prendiville and Dr. James L. Newlon Announce Collaboration at Facial Plastic Surgery Center

FORT MYERS, FLA., February 16, 2018 – Facial Plastic Surgeons Dr. Stephen Prendiville and Dr.…

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Dr. Stephen Prendiville and Dr. James L. Newlon Announce Collaboration at Facial Plastic Surgery Center

FORT MYERS, FLA., February 16, 2018 – Facial Plastic Surgeons Dr. Stephen Prendiville and Dr. James L. Newlon have announced that they have formed a collaboration at the Facial Plastic Surgery Center, effective March 1.
The two surgeons will share space at Dr. Prendiville’s offices at 9407 Cypress Lake Drive in Fort Myers.
Dr. Newlon has more than 12 years of experience as a facial plastic surgeon and is the current chairman of otolaryngology for the Lee Health system.  He is Board-certified by both the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.
Dr. Prendiville is the only Fellowship-trained facial plastic surgeon in Fort Myers who is certified by both the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery.
“Dr. Newlon and I have similar approaches to cosmetic surgery and helping patients feel and look their best. Our collaboration will provide Lee, Collier, and Charlotte counties with a center with two accomplished, experienced Facial Plastic Surgeons who achieve natural results. Why take your face anywhere else?” Dr. Prendiville said.
Dr. Newlon will be introduced at the March 23 facial plastic surgery seminar hosted by Dr. Prendiville at Bonita Bay Country Club, 26660 Country Club Drive. The seminar includes a light lunch and starts at 11:30 a.m. The seminar is free, but reservations are required by calling 239-437-3900.  Space is limited.
Dr. Prendiville is recognized nationally as a facelift expert with more than 20 articles published in medical journals and he has served as guest editor for Facial Plastic Surgery Clinics of North America. He also is a featured presenter at many state and national meetings about facial plastic surgery.
Dr. Prendiville is one of 500 doctors in the world to receive the prestigious RealSelf 500 Award from RealSelf, the leading online community that helps people make confident choices in elective cosmetic procedures.  Dr. Prendiville has been a reviewer on RealSelf.com since 2008 and has now achieved Distinguished Member status for his responses to patients with questions about facial plastic surgery and skin rejuvenation techniques.
Dr. Prendiville also is the past president and secretary/treasurer of the Florida Society of Facial Plastic Surgery.
Dr. Prendiville graduated with his M.D. degree with high honors from Georgetown University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C., and served his residency at Georgetown University.
He was awarded a Fellowship in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at St. Louis University in Missouri, where he was a clinical instructor in the St. Louis University Department of Otolaryngology.
Dr. Newlon is the former assistant chief of otolaryngology Services at William Beaumont Army Medical Center in Fort Bliss, Tex., and has extensive experience in reconstructive and facial enhancement surgery to help injured soldiers returning from combat to the U.S.
Dr. Newlon earned his medical degree from Loma Linda University in Loma Linda, Calif., with help from an Army scholarship and began his medical career as an Army officer.  He earned his Bachelor of Science degree, summa cum laude, from Kennesaw State University in Georgia.
Dr. Newlon has received several honors including Surgical Intern of the Year in 2000-01 and number one ranking in the 2007 American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery’s written board certification exam.
Since leaving the Army in 2009, Dr. Newlon has been practicing in Southwest Florida as a facial plastic surgeon and is the current chairman of otolaryngology for the Lee Health system.
All surgeries are performed at Dr. Prendiville’s state-of-the-art Surgical Center adjacent to his office in South Fort Myers at 9407 Cypress Lake Drive.  The Surgical Center is accredited by the American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Surgical Facilities (AAAASF), which is the largest accrediting body for outpatient surgical facilities in the United States.
For more information, visit www.drprendiville.com and www.docnewlon.com

FSW Unveils Official College Flag

February 6, 2018 – Fort Myers, FLA – Florida SouthWestern State College now has an…

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FSW Unveils Official College Flag

February 6, 2018 – Fort Myers, FLA – Florida SouthWestern State College now has an official college flag. The new design was unveiled Friday, Feb. 2 at a college-wide event for faculty and staff.
“The flag showcases our college colors, purple and aqua, plus our official college seal. It was designed with four blocks which represent the four locations we have in southwest Florida,” said Dr. Jeff Allbritten, FSW President. “Along with our college colors and seal, the flag also has our FSW letters, and a wavy pattern in the aqua block. The overall design is eye-catching.”
In the coming weeks, the college flag will be installed on FSW’s campuses and regional education center. The college flag will fly next to the American flag in front of Suncoast Credit Union Arena in Fort Myers; the Grand Lely Drive entrance on the Naples campus; in the center of the Punta Gorda campus; and off Cowboy Way on the LaBelle regional education center.
Florida SouthWestern State College is Southwest Florida’s largest and one of the most affordable institutions of higher education. Annually serving nearly 22,000 students globally, FSW offers a variety of nationally-ranked, career-focused academic programs with two- and four-year degrees, and professional certifications. Students are also active in clubs and programs catered to their interests. FSW debuted its intercollegiate athletics program in the fall 2015. Visit www.FSW.edu for more information.

Fort Myers Pro Rodeo Set for March 23rd & 24th Lee County Posse Arena in North Fort Myers, FL

The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Pro Rodeo returns to Fort Myers March 23rd and 24th.…

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Fort Myers Pro Rodeo Set for March 23rd & 24th Lee County Posse Arena in North Fort Myers, FL

The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Pro Rodeo returns to Fort Myers March 23rd and 24th. Fort Myers will host the event at the Lee County Posse Arena located at 17401 Palm Creek Drive. On both Friday and Saturday the gates will open at 5:00pm and the rodeo will officially start at 7:00 pm.
The rodeo includes: Bronco Riding, Steer Wrestling, Tie-Down Roping, Team Roping, Girls Barrel Race & the most dangerous Bull Riding! Audiences will be entertained by the amazing professional Rodeo Clowns! This Pro Rodeo counts to qualify the winners for advancement to the Southeastern Circuit Championship.
For more information and tickets, visit www.fortmyersprorodeo.com. A complete schedule and event map is located on the website and we will continue to update the information as it becomes available. Tickets are available on our website and will also be available at the Fort Myers and Cape Coral Hooters locations and Sweet Cypress Ranch.
We look forward to seeing everyone at the Fort Myers Pro Rodeo!
Check us out on Facebook and Instagram!

 

 https://www.facebook.com/FortMyersProRodeo #ftmyersprorodeo

 

Cost: Adults $20

Children $10 (Children 4 and younger are free)

VIP $75

ART WALKS THE RUNWAYS BRINGS THREE DAZZLING DAYS OF INTERNATIONAL AND LOCAL FASHION TO DOWNTOWN FORT MYERS

February 14, 2018 - Fort Myers FL - Fort Myers’ favorite fashion show is back…

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ART WALKS THE RUNWAYS BRINGS THREE DAZZLING DAYS OF INTERNATIONAL AND LOCAL FASHION TO DOWNTOWN FORT MYERS

February 14, 2018 – Fort Myers FL – Fort Myers’ favorite fashion show is back for its 7th year at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center! Hosted by Melissa DeHaven, Art Walks the Runway takes place from March 8th – 10th. See international Couture fashion from Vivre Couture, Marmar Halim, Diana Couture, and Usama Ishtay! Plus, enjoy runway-ready local boutique styles from Forema, Saratoga Sundress, Hollie’s Boutique, and get a look at Frankie Colt’s new line, Cobra Empire. Enjoy live entertainment, including a performance art piece from Elements of Body Art. The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center is located at 2301 First St. in the historic downtown Fort Myers River District.
Art Walks the Runway’s three dazzling days of fashion begins on Thursday, March 8th at the Opening Night Celebration, featuring Vivre Couture. Vivre Couture is an organic partnership between a designer and an artist.They came together with a vision for an inspired line of wearable original paintings with the highest quality elements of art, design, and construction.
Sarah LaPierre is the artist who painted the Palm Beach Collection featured at this season’s Art Walks the Runway. Palette knives and heavy bodied acrylic paints provide the full textures and vibrant colors that are characteristics of her style. Thursday night’s Opening Celebration also features a contortionist performance by Katarina Danks, and a musical performance by singer-songwriter Emma Arnold, accompanied by cellist John Davis.
Then on Friday, March 9th, experience the best in local fashion from Forema, Saratoga Sundress, and Hollie’s Boutique. Forema is known for their inviting, happy, boho atmosphere, specializing in chic, affordable clothing. They own three Florida locations, one of which is located in Gulf Coast Town Center. Saratoga Sundress located in the Bell Tower Shops carries a large variety of merchandise, including a range of boho chic summer and winter apparel. Hollie’s Boutique boast two location in SWFL on Sanibel Island and Fort Myers. They’re widely known for trendy, everyday fashion that works for the busy yet stylish woman. Friday also features the debut of locally loved musician Frankie Colt’s new line, Cobra Empire. Enjoy a musical performance from Frankie as her fashion takes the runway for the first time!
Saturday’s finale runway brings international Couture designers to Fort Myers. Take in awe-inspiring Haute Couture from Marmar Halim, Diana Couture, and Usama Ishtay. The designer label of Marmar Halim incontestably yields and creates elite fashion blends that are flanked by a fusion of Eastern and Western Couture with a sheek and lavish flair. Diana Couture has grown to being one of the most successful couture brands in Surabaya, Indonesia. The brand is a fabulous platform fueled by prayers and dreams. A-list socialites from all over Indonesia, as well as iconic Indonesian celebrities, have been common clients to the brand. Usama Ishtay is young designer of Arab descent raised in Venezuela. His eye for fashion and living in Couture-centric Los Angeles lead him to work with Fashion Hearts at L.A. Fashion Week. The final evening also features a burlesque-style performance piece from Elements of Body Art, and a contortionist performance by Katarina Danks.
7th Annual Art Walks the Runway Fashion Show
March 8th – 10th 2018
All Nights: Runway • 8pm | Cocktails • 7pm
For tickets and info, visit www.sbdac.com.
Runway music for all three nights provided by Sol Productions’ DJ Tommy Giaime.
Thursday and Friday night’s hair: Scene 826 | http://scene826hairstudio.com/
Saturday night’s hair: Red Salon & Spa. | http://redsalonandspa.com/.
All nights’ makeup: Sunstate Academy | http://www.sunstateftm.com/.
All evenings co-decorated by Planned Perfection. Visit http://www.plannedperfectioninc.com/ for more info.
Sponsored by BMW Fort Myers, All About Closets, and Planned Perfection.

Edison & Ford Winter Estates Selects New CEO

FORT MYERS, Fla. (February 2, 2018) -- The Edison & Ford Winter Estates board of…

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Edison & Ford Winter Estates Selects New CEO

FORT MYERS, Fla. (February 2, 2018) — The Edison & Ford Winter Estates board of trustees and executive search committee has selected Michael A. Flanders as the organization’s new President and CEO. Flanders has a long history with Edison Ford and has strategic planning and historic preservation experience. He has lived in Southwest Florida most of his life and has built important relationships with community and public officials that will be beneficial to Edison Ford. He will officially start his new position on February 12.
“Mr. Flanders is talented and experienced in science, horticulture, government, art, architecture and master site planning,” said Lee Golden, chairman of the board of trustees. “His experience and trusted relationships will be valuable to the Estates for moving forward with the organization’s immediate goals and long-range master plan.”
Flanders has 30 years of master site planning experience and was instrumental in the revitalization of the downtown Fort Myers historic district with the design and construction of the downtown streetscape. He also has 33 years of experience  designing architecture compatible with the Southwest Florida environment and experience working with preserving historic designations.
“I am proud to accept the honor of becoming the new President and CEO of such an important organization in our community,” said Flanders. “I look forward to working with the staff to create partnerships and collaborate in many ways with the community.”
Flanders graduated from Fort Myers High School, he has a Bachelor of Design degree from the University of Florida and a Master of Architecture degree from Virginia Polytechnic Institute. He has owned an architectural firm in historic downtown Fort Myers since 1984.
Edison & Ford Winter Estates is the internationally known winter home site of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. More than 250,000 visitors walk through the site each year from all around the globe. The organization has received many awards, including the National Stewardship Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the National Garden Clubs’ Historic Preservation Award. The site is an official project of “Save America’s Treasures,” a Florida Historic Landmark and a National Register Historic Site. The Edison Botanic Laboratory is a National Historic Chemical Landmark. The site is open every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas from 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and until 9 p.m. during the month of December.

AMERICAN VIRTUOSI FEATURES CHAMBER MUSIC’S MASTERS FOR AN AWE-INSPIRING CONCERT

February 15, 2018 - Fort Myers, FL - Experience the grand finale of the 2018…

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AMERICAN VIRTUOSI FEATURES CHAMBER MUSIC’S MASTERS FOR AN AWE-INSPIRING CONCERT

February 15, 2018 – Fort Myers, FL – Experience the grand finale of the 2018 Chamber Series at the American Virtuosi Concert! On Friday, March 30th, experience world-class chamber music from violinist Peter Winograd, violist Jim Griffith, cellist Andres Díaz, and pianist Wendy Chen. This unique engagement will also include a performance by a very special guests violinists Anton Miller and Rita Porfiris, and French horn player Ryan Little. Enjoy an unforgettable evening of live classical music from some the world’s leading concert artists! The Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center is located at 2301 First St. in the historic downtown Fort Myers River District.
Now in its 10th season, the American Virtuosi concert presents Southwest Florida with a memorable evening of chamber music. American Virtuosi is the final concert in the Chamber Music Series at the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. Each season, renowned chamber musicians perform in the outstanding first floor Grand Atrium. In addition to the American Virtuosi Concert, the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center also hosts the American Virtuosi Gala, an exquisite chamber performance featuring the Virtuosi ensemble and a four-course meal prepared by G3 Catering. The American Virtuosi Gala is a fundraiser benefiting the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center’s Eclectic Education programs. Take part in the American Virtuosi Concert on Friday, March 30th, and the American Virtuosi Gala on Saturday, March 31st.
American Virtuosi Concert
Friday, March 30, 2018
Performance: 8pm | Cocktails: 7pm
Tickets: GA – $35 in Advance | $40 Day of Concert

For tickets and info, visit www.sbdac.com
The American Virtuosi
Peter Winograd joined the American String Quartet as the first violinist in 1990. He gave his first solo public performance at the age of 11, and at age 17 he was accepted as a scholarship student of Dorothy DeLay at the Juilliard School. Recognized early as an exceptionally promising young artist, Winograd was a top prizewinner in the 1988 Naumburg International Violin Competition. He then made his New York debut to critical acclaim and has since appeared as a guest soloist with numerous orchestras and in recital across the country and abroad.  Peter holds bach­e­lor’s and master’s degrees from The Juilliard School and has been a mem­ber of the violin and chamber music faculties of the Manhattan School of Music and the Aspen Music School (where the American is Quartet-in-Residence) since 1990. For more information, visit http://www.americanstringquartet.com/winograd.htm.
Jim Griffith received his M.M. degree from the Juilliard School. He also received his undergraduate degree from the Manhattan School of Music and attended Florida State University. He is a former member of the Hudson String Quartet in New York, faculty member of Point-Counterpoint Chamber Music Camp in Vermont and founding member of the Palm Beach Chamber Music Festival. He formerly served as principal violist of the New York Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra and the New York Virtuosi. Currently, he is enjoying his twenty-ninth season as violist in the Naples Philharmonic. Mr. Griffith is also the Executive Director of the Sidney & Berne Davis Art Center. For more information, visit http://artisnaples.org/naples-philharmonic/musicians/james-griffith.
Andres Díaz has exhilarated both critics and audiences with his intense and charismatic performances since winning the First Prize in the 1986 Naumburg International Cello Competition. He was awarded the prestigious Avery Fisher Career Grant and was nominated for a 2009 Latin Grammy. His numerous orchestral appearances have included performances with the American Symphony, Milwaukee Symphony, Seattle Symphony, Rochester Symphony, National Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony, and the Atlanta Symphony under Robert Shaw. Highlights of his recent seasons are tours of Taiwan, Hong Kong, Korea, Japan, Hawaii, and Canada; and appearances in Chile, Venezuela, Argentina, and the Dominican Republic. His debut solo recording on MusicMasters with pianist Samuel Sanders was acclaimed by the Boston Globe as “strong and subtle; everything Díaz does has personality and, better than that, character.” His most recent release features the six Bach Suites on the Azica Records label. His summer festival appearances include the Banff Centre, Santa Fe, La Jolla, Marlboro, Ravinia, Bravo! Vail, Spoleto, Music@Menlo, Saratoga, and Tanglewood festivals. Mr. Díaz graduated from the New England Conservatory, where he worked with Laurence Lesser and Colin Carr. He is a professor at Southern Methodist University and holds the Koerner Chair in Cello at the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto.. For more information, visit https://www.smu.edu/Meadows/AreasOfStudy/Music/Faculty/DiazAndres.
Wendy Chen debuted at the age of 15 with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under conductor André Previn. In 1990 she became the youngest winner ever of the National Chopin Competition, was one of the inaugural recipients of the Irving S. Gilmore Young Artists Award, and was named a Presidential Scholar by the National Foundation for the Arts.  Since then, her career has flourished, adding Young Concert Artists International Auditions and Washington International Competition to her numerous awards. For more information, visit http://wendy-chen.com/Site/biography.html.
Special Guest Performers
Anton Miller has appeared throughout the United States and abroad as a soloist, chamber musician, recitalist, and pedagogue. He has performed over fifty violin concertos with a number of orchestras on four continents. His world premiere performance of Xiogang Ye’s “Last Paradise” for violin and orchestra in Beijing, China with the Central Philharmonic Orchestra was recorded for broadcast throughout Asia and released on CD. Mr. Miller has also been concertmaster for a number of orchestras including almost thirty years with Lincoln Symphony Orchestra and the New Jersey Festival Orchestra. He was also concertmaster for an Argentinian tour of the American Ballet Theatre. He has made a number of recital and chamber music tours to Europe with performances in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Greece and England. A long time resident of the East Coast, Anton has performed more than a hundred chamber music concerts and recitals in the New York City area. For more info, visit http://www.antonmiller.com/.
Rita Porfiris has been the subject of articles and interviews in media across the globe including the New York Times, Chamber Music America, International Symphony Musician, the NBC Nightly News, NPR, PBS, and the BBC. She has performed in major concert halls and music festivals worldwide and as a soloist has appeared with numerous orchestras including the Orquesta Filarmonica de la Ciudad de Mexico, the New World Symphony, and was a featured soloist in the Houston Symphony’s Baroque Festival. Currently the Associate Professor of Viola at The Hartt School, she has also been on the faculties of New York University, the University of Houston Moores’ School of Music, Florida International University, and the Harlem School for the Arts in New York. Ms. Porfiris is a member of the Hartt String Quartet and the Miller-Porfiris Duo. As a founding member of the Plymouth Quartet, she was in-residence at the Ojai Festival, Mainly Mozart, Point Counterpoint, and the Internationale Quartettakademie Prag-Wien-Budapest. For more info, visit http://ritaporfiris.com.
Ryan Little is the new principal horn in the Naples Philharmonic. He currently serves as assistant principal/utility horn of the Britt Music & Arts Festival in Jacksonville, Oregon. Little received his Master of Music degree from the Shepherd School of Music at Rice University in 2017 where he studied with William VerMeulen of the Houston Symphony. In 2015, he received his Bachelor of Music degree from the Bienen School of Music at Northwestern University where he studied with Gail Williams and Jonathan Boen. For more info, visit http://artisnaples.org/naples-philharmonic/musicians/ryan-little.