National Symphony Orchestra of Arequipa
Rafael was invited to give a master class (rehearsal) for this professional orchestra sponsored by the Peruvian Ministry of Culture in the historic city of Arequipa. Originally planned as a rehearsal of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, COVID protocols required a last-minute change to a lecture format. Switching gears, Rafael instead gave a presentation on the work that Augsburg University has undertaken in fundamentally transforming the approach to teaching music history as part of its music degree programs. Shifting from a pre-1750/post-1750 construction to a two-semester sequence of “Music and Identity in the Americas” and “Musical Philosophy,” students are presented with a more holistic view of music as it functions within society, critical views on forming musical judgements, and differing philosophical frameworks between Western and Eastern cultures whose aesthetics manifest in the many ways that music is made and how it sounds. This lecture was well-received and provoked a lengthy discussion that energized this audience of professional orchestra musicians. Rafael looks forward to returning to Arequipa to lead the orchestra in concert.