Diaspora Duo is one of the most exciting young ensembles of contemporary music to have come out from Venezuela in the last decade. Building on the foundations of Venezuela's classical music movement and both American and European conservatory traditions, Diaspora combines the best of these worlds with the addition of fluency in genres as diverse as latin, jazz, pop and rock.

With a focus on the performance of new works, works they consider have not been given enough attention before and especially, works from the standard repertoire under a different, new light, Diaspora concerts are filled with an eclectic mix of music that is imaginative, experimental and exciting. Their performances are designed to be a true collaboration between performers and audience because Diaspora strongly believes that the place where future masterpieces are born is the ears and minds of their listeners.

Diaspora Duo is comprised of violinist Raul Suarez and pianist Alfredo Ovalles. Performing together since 2007, they have given Venezuelan premieres of works by André Previn, Alfred Schnittke, Fazil Say, György Kurtág and Keith Jarrett, among others. The duo desires to reach out to communities where, through the medium of contemporary music, they can begin to expand the interests of their audiences, inspiring them to further explore not only modern music, but music of all kinds.

Guided by world-renowned artists and teachers, the members of Diaspora Duo have studied at such highly regarded institutions as Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, France; University of Music and Performing Arts of Vienna, Austria; Baylor University in Texas, USA; and in the Mozarteum School of Music and the Juan José Landaeta Conservatory in Caracas, Venezuela.

Raúl Suárez

Born in Valencia, Venezuela, Raul studied with Professor Jorge Orozco at the Carabobo Music Conservatory before joining the studio of Professor Virginie Robilliard in the Mozarteum School of Music in Caracas. At 17 he is admitted into the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique et de Danse de Paris, France, where, thanks to the support of Total Oil and Gas Venezuela, he studies with personalities like Olivier Charlier, Joanna Matkowska, Philippe Muller, Ami Flammer, Jean Sulem and Marc Coppey.

Mr. Suarez has appeared in several halls, such as the "Oblast Philharmonic" in Belarus and the Teresa Carreño Theater in Venezuela, where he has performed as a chamber musician and soloist, playing with orchestras like the Caracas Municipal Symphony Orchestra and the Radio and Television Orchestra of Belarus.

An advocate of modern music, Raul has collaborated with composers like Michaël Levinas, Juan Pablo Carreño, Iancu Dumitrescu and Ana-Maria Avram. He is an active member of ensembles "Le Balcon" and "Hyperion". These collaborations have included concerts in Paris, London, Berlin and Brussels in festivals like "Spectrum" and "Ars Musica" as well as leading him to work with artists far removed from the classical music world like M83 and Stephen O'Malley (member of metal bands Khanate, Sunn O))) and Burning Witch)

Alfredo Ovalles

Venezuelan-born pianist Alfredo Ovalles received his diploma from the "Juan José Landaeta" Conservatory of Music in 2006, having studied with Professor Carlos Urbaneja. After graduating from the Conservatory, he continued his studies with Professor Urbaneja at the Mozarteum School of Music in Caracas and in 2011 he received a dual Master of Music Degree from Baylor University in Piano Performance and Collaborative Piano, where his teacher was Ms. Krassimira Jordan. Following his Master studies in the United States, Alfredo moved to Vienna, Austria, to pursue postgraduate studies with Professors Thomas Kreuzberger and Barbara Moser at the University for Music and Performing Arts of Vienna.

Alfredo has been awarded several prizes in some of Venezuela's most important competitions and has received the first prize in the VIII International "Franz Schubert" Competition in Bulgaria and the second prize in the IV "María Clara Cullell International Piano Competition" in San José de Costa Rica. Alfredo has played with some of Venezuela's most renowned orchestras — the Caracas Municipal Symphony Orchestra and the National Philharmonic Orchestra. He also has appeared on recitals in some of his country's most important halls, including the Jose Felix Ribas Hall in the Teresa Carreño Theater and the Alexander von Humboldt Theater, among others. Outside of Venezuela he has performed in the Eugene O'Neill Theater in San José, Costa Rica, the Steinway Hall in Dallas, Texas, as part of the Dallas Modern Music Festival and the "Sava Ognianov" Theater in Ruse, Bulgaria.

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