Violin Professor Ron Francois and the Duo Francois travel to Mexico for annual festival

Duo Francois Promotional Photo

The Duo Francois – comprised of CSU faculty violinist Ron Francois and pianist Silvana Santinelli – will be featured at the FICA21 festival at the University of Veracruzana in Xalapa, Mexico.

The International Camerata 21 Festival (FICA 21) of the Faculty of Music of the Universidad Veracruzana (UV) has been held uninterrupted since 1998. Founded by composer, researcher, and professor Emil Awad, the festival is touted as a professional and artistic-academic space for students.

"The goal is the link with society, with the students; linking research with society and the enculturation of students," said Awad about the event.

The University in Veracruzana has generated four CSU master's students in music, with three of the four becoming CSU Symphony concertmasters.

As the performer's website notes, "The energetic ensemble has quickly become well known and sought after for their dynamic performances.  The Duo brings together two internationally acclaimed soloists and chamber musicians, who combine charisma, musical command, synchronicity, and virtuosity." (

The Duo will teach masterclasses for violin and piano, and offer chamber music coaching sessions to the excellent students of U. Veracruzana, from Sept. 21-25.

The final concert will take place at the main cultural center in the "Sala Tlaqna," home of the Xalapa Symphony Orchestra. The Duo Francois will also collaborate with the principal violist and cellist of this orchestra – Yuri Bullon and Ina Nazidse – in a performance of the piano quartet by Robert Schumann in E flat, Op.47.

"It is an honor to be invited to this festival and we look forward to collaborating with the fine musicians from Xalapa, Mexico,"  said Francois.