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  • Faculty

  • Rafael Figueroa


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    Rafael Figueroa


    Principal cellist with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra since 1995, Rafael Figueroa has appeared as a soloist and chamber musician throughout the United States, Europe, South and Central America and Japan. He is the winner of many distinguished competitions and awards including the First Prize at the Gregor Piatigorsky Competition in Boston, the Bronze Medal at the International Pablo Casals Competition in Budapest and the Concerto Competition at the Third American Cello Congress.   

    Rafael has been a frequent soloist with the Casals Festival in Puerto Rico as well as the Casals Hall Festival in Tokyo, The Pacific Music Festival in Japan, Aspen Music Festival, Marlboro Music Festival, the ¨Musique et vin au Clos Vougeot ¨ Festival in Burgundy, France and the Cape Cod Chamber Music Festival.   

    His solo work with the Met Orchestra can be heard and seen worldwide at the popular Met HD broadcasts to movie theaters over several continents as well as the legendary Met radio broadcasts on Saturday afternoons and at the Met Orchestra Carnegie Hall Series. Together with Maestro James Levine and his colleagues from the Met Orchestra, Rafael is heard frequently at the Met Chamber Ensemble Series at Weill and Zankel Halls where he has performed a large range of repertory starting from the baroque and extending to world premieres of works by Elliot Carter, John Harbison and Charles Wuorinen.  

    Mr. Figueroa has appeared in recitals at the Kennedy Center, The Library of Congress, Merkin Hall, Jordan Hall and nationwide on National Public Radio. In 2003 Rafael made his Carnegie Hall solo debut performing the Brahms Double Concerto with Concertmaster David Chan and the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra under James Levine to critical acclaim. Mr. Figueroa and Mr. Chan can be heard in their critically acclaimed CD of music for violin and cello which includes the Duo by Zoltan Kodaly and the Sonata by Maurice Ravel.   

    Rafael completed his studies under the legendary Janos Starker and Gary Hoffman at the Indiana University School of Music where upon graduation  he became a member of the cello faculty. He performs on a cello by Roger / Max Millant , Paris 1937.

    Degrees Held

    Bachelor's Degree and Artist Diploma, Indiana University 

    Current Courses

    GR Lessons

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