Luis Aguilar2023-08-08T11:23:57-04:00

Luis Aguilar

Adjunct | Orchestral Conducting, Fall 2023

Luis is a creative and dynamic artist with an unfolding career as a conductor. His musical training started at El Sistema (Venezuela) and let to a MM in Orchestral Conducting at FIU. Currently, he holds the positions of Interim Conductor of the Leader’s Symphony Orchestra of Miami Music Project, Assistant Conductor of The Miami Symphony Orchestra, and Regular Guest Conductor of the Venezuelans United by Music (VUM) Orchestra.

Aguilar’s recent conducting engagements include the Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra, the Miami Symphony Orchestra, the National Youth Orchestra of the RNOCIJP (Panama), the Teresa Carreño Symphony Orchestra, the Simón Bolívar Choir, the Florida International University Symphony Orchestra, the Teresa Carreño Ballet, the VUM Orchestra, and the inaugural concert of the novel Miami Ocean Orchestra.

His first conducting mentor was Maestro José Antonio Abreu (Venezuela). Then he graduated with a Master’s Degree in Orchestral Conducting at Florida International University under the guidance of Dr. Javier Mendoza. Luis has also studied with Teresa Hernández and Dick van Gasteren.

In March 2020, Aguilar received the Graduate Performance Award from Florida International University and participated in the 28th World Music Competition. Later that year, he was invited to join two honor societies, the Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi and the Golden Key International Honour Society.

In 2021, Luis was a selected finalist in the 2021 Los Angeles Conducting Workshop and Competition with Maestro Neil Thomson and Dr. Scott Weiss and was invited to attend the 2021 Antal Dorati International Conducting Competition in Hungary, and the 2022 Nino Rota International Conducting Competition in Italy.

Aguilar is a former member of the celebrated Simón Bolívar Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela in which he was Principal Viola from 2006 to 2012. This position allowed him to perform in multiple concerts and recordings with conductors and soloists such as Gustavo Dudamel, Claudio Abbado, Simon Rattle, Daniel Barenboim, Juan Diego Florez, Luciano Pavarotti, Bryn Terfel, Itzhak Perlman, and Pinchas Zukerman. These experiences took place at some of the most iconic venues around the globe such as the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, the Carnegie Hall in NY, the Symphony Center in Chicago, the Berliner Philharmonie in Berlin, the Musikverein in Vienna, and the Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg.

With the above-mentioned orchestra, Luis won a Latin Grammy Award for “Bidimensional” (Producciones Guaqueros, 2017) and was nominated for “Fiesta” (Deutsche Grammophon, 2008); performed as principal viola in two albums: “The Rite of Spring” with conductor Gustavo Dudamel (Deutsche Grammophon, 2010), and “Claudio Abbado – Easter 2010 at Lucerne Festival” with conductor Claudio Abbado (Accentus Music, 2011); and participated in side-by-side concerts with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Goteborg Symphony.

His chamber music experience includes sharing the stage with Klaus Thunemann (bassoon), Jonathan Cohler (clarinet), Kalman Berkes (clarinet), and Adalbert Skocic (cello), plus workshops with the Latin American Quartet (2007) and Rainer Schmidt, violinist of the Hagen String Quartet (2009).

Alongside the musical experience, Aguilar served as Strings Coordinator of El Sistema’s National Orchestral Program (Venezuela, 2017-2018). In that position, he pioneered the writing of the El Sistema Procedures Manual, charted the viola curriculum for the upcoming El Sistema University, and designed strategies to improve the growth of youth and children orchestras throughout the country.

Aguilar is also a supporter of organizations that enrich the lives of children and youth. In that sense, he currently supports Miami Music Project (Miami) and has been a guest clinician and conductor to three ensembles for Sistema Ravinia (Ravinia Festival, Chicago); conductor of the Young Mozarts String Orchestra, the Concert Chamber Ensemble, and the Symphony Quartet for Greater Miami Youth Symphony (Miami); and led masterclasses for institutions such as Youth Orchestra Los Angeles (YOLA, Los Angeles), Big Noise (Sistema Scotland, Stirling), Superar (Sistema Austria, Vienna), and El Sistema (Venezuela).