The Florida Chamber Orchestra (FCO) was founded by Maestro Marlene Urbay in 1995. Its repertoire features from the baroque and the classics, to Gershwin, Lecuona and the most representative composers of Latin America and Europe including contemporary composers.

FCO‘s inaugural performance in January 1996 presented classical chamber music to an audience of 200 people at the Colonnade Hotel. After that other presentations including “Magic Strings”(1999), “Barroco Concert” (1997), the “Petite Concert for Opera” (1997), and “Homage to Garcia Lorca” (1998), “Famous Cuban Classics”( 1999) among others, were performed for audiences that increases in numbers and in larger venues, like Gusman Performing Hall at U.M. ,FIU Concert Hall, Gusman Performing Hall downtown, and Dade County Auditorium.

The Florida Chamber Orchestra is in residence at Roca theater. In its purpose to reach the multiethnic population of South Florida, the FCO presented programs of French music for Bastille Day (1996), Traditional Spanish repertoire in cooperation with Angela Rhea’s Flamenco Dancing Company ( 1997-98-99), Argentinian Tango production with Argentinian recording singer Daniel Bouchet and Argentinian guest musicians ( 1998-99), African American with Dr. Lonnie Smith and Latin Jazz with the group Hot Club USA ( 1998 ,99) Cuban music with popular singers Albita Rodriguez, Luis Bofil, Maggie Carles, Malena Burke and Lucrecia( 1999,2001,2002) Afro-Cuban folklore with the dance company Ife-Ile( 1996), Cuban classical music with famous opera singers and guest soloist and Children concerts specially designed for the young audience FCO has participated in community festivals such as the Miami Centennial at Bayfront Park(1996), Festival Conchita Espinosa Academy at Dade County Auditorium (1997, 1999), Carnaval Calle Ocho at the Colonnade Hotel and Sundays on the Mile (1999-2000). Cuba Nostalgia at Convention Center-Coconut Grove (2000).

FCO has contributed to the community through benefit concerts for organizations such as GRASP -Guantanamo Refugee Relief- (1996); the Make a Wish Foundation (1997); the Latin Builders Association (1998-1999),City of Miami 108 Birthday Celebration and Voices for Children Foundation among others 2002. FCO has collaborated with Rosario Suarez Ballet (2000, 2002, 2003, and 2004) and made the successfully premier of the Ballet “Cecilia Valdes”, presented by the University of Miami.

FCO toured throughout the State a production called Spanish Extravaganza, Tango Fever, Latin Fire, and Vision of Love for the Arie Kaduri Agency. All these presentations were very successful and widely expanded the orchestras exposure. FCO first CD “Memories of Cuba” was recorded under SONY label in February 2000, “Échale Salsita”, 2005 under Seyer Records and the last one is “Cantares” (Latin American Christmas music) under Seyer Records too.

Florida Chamber Orchestra aims to make classical and classically influence music accessible to all members of the south Florida community. Representing the Caribbean Latin America, Europe and United States, FCO forges Miami’s diverse musical heritage into a unique Florida sound. FCO programs combine popular, folkloric and classical selections in an effort to educate all sectors of the audience about each other. Appealing to a variety of audiences FCO strives to promote a common identity for South Florida that speaks the language of music. In teaching this language, FCO takes a special interest in the cultivation if young artists and audiences.

The mission of the FCO is to unify, entertain and educate audiences of different cultural backgrounds thru the universal language of music that transcend any kind of boundaries and created its own esthetic environmental territory .


The Florida Chamber Orchestra
6701 SW 55 Street, Miami, FL 33155
Ph: 786.290.1888
Designed by: Ana Fernandez
Website updated on August 4, 2012
by Maritza C. Alvarez