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Musical Bridges' International Music Festival Set To Wow Audiences

A San Antonio musical institution is about to launch its yearly music festival. They're Musical Bridges Around the World, and Suhail Arastu says this is their purpose.

"To unite, educate and inspire through world class performing and visual arts."

Since most Americans' view of the world is colored by war-torn news footage, Musical Bridges wants to widen that view.

"Showcase the beauty, the creativity, behind some of those same regions through the lens of the performing arts."

Each year they create a two-week international music festival.

"This year's festival goes from the 12th through the 26th of February.  We open with a gospel concert, followed by a Valentine's concert by a Grammy award-winning artist from Spain, Victor Prieto."

Prieto is a madly talented jazz accordionist. 

"We've got an amazing Canadian Cellist; it'll be a very minimalist concert, it's part of our off-the-grid series at the Southwest School of Art Chapel. What's really special is we like to highlight upcoming talent, and there's a kid from Bali, Indonesia named Joey Alexander who's a child prodigy as a pianist, and he'll come with his jazz trio."

Alexander, 13, walked away empty-handed from his two Grammy nominations last year, but he's nominated again this year. 

"We've also got performances that really merge the visual and performing arts. Zoe Keating will do that with a local artist, Rodolfo Choperena. And we'll have a program at the Tobin called Lost Spring, which will be a play, also done to visual art."

Lovers of classical music will enjoy one night in particular.

"We have our Mozart partnership concert, which will be a Mozart extravaganza at the Empire Theater, as well as a long-time favorite from Argentina, JP Jofre."

And they end it with some Cuban music.

"We close the festival on the 26th at 3p.m. at the Tobin Center's H-E-B Performance Hall with Gonzalo Rubalcalva and his quartet. So we're excited about the whole series of eight concerts."

For those of you with a tight budget, take note.

"The entire festival is free--first come first served. Reserved seating is also an option, by donation."

Find more on the International Music Festival here

https://vimeo.com/180235764">International Music Festival | Highlights from https://vimeo.com/mbaw">Musical Bridges Around The World on Vimeo.

Jack Morgan can be reached at jack@tpr.org and on Twitter at @JackMorganii