The Guifiti String Quartet consists of four Northwestern State University undergraduate music performance majors from the studios of Dr. Andrej Kurti and Paul Christopher. Members are Emilio Castro and Roman Carranza on violin, Marcela Fernandez on viola and Milovan Paz on cello. All four are from San Pedro Sula, Honduras. Quartet members are active performers in area orchestras including the Texarkana, Rapides and South Arkansas symphony orchestras.
The program will include Mozart's early Quartet in C major, K. 157 and Borodin's Quartet No.2 in D major.
The members of the quartet are among 10 Northwestern State students from San Pedro Sula, the second largest city in Honduras. The connection between NSU and music students in San Pedro Sula began three years ago when Natchitoches-Northwestern Symphony Orchestra conductor Dr. Douglas Bakenhus visited the city and had auditions for music students.
“We started doing research on Northwestern State and liked what we found out,” said Carranza. “We learned NSU was a good school with a good music program and good violin teacher in Mr. Kurti.”
According to Carranza, the Honduran students at Northwestern State feel comfortable in Natchitoches.
“I am happy here and am glad I found out about Northwestern State,” he said. “It is helpful to have a number of friends from Honduras here as well to help you adjust. I keep in touch with friends at home and tell them about my experiences here.”
Castro is in his first semester at NSU after transferring from an out-of-state university. He is a member of the Natchitoches-Northwestern Symphony and the NSU Chamber Orchestra.
“I think it’s great to have so many opportunities to perform with the orchestra and with a small chamber group,” said Castro. “Many students at other universities don’t have the chances we do. Every time you have a chance to get on stage and perform, it is a new experience. Since all of us know each other so well, we can talk about our performances in a way others can’t. That makes us better as a group.”
Carranza says the Guifiti String Quartet adds to his educational experience at Northwestern State.
“It gives each of us a chance to open our minds as individuals and explore new ways to do music,” said Carranza. “Mr. Christopher is very supportive of us. We are glad to be able to perform our kind of music.”
Three of the Honduran students, including Castro, are double majors in music performance and computer information systems. Another student is a double major in music performance and psychology.
“It worked out well for me that the university has a good music program and computer information systems program,” said Castro. “Even though I study CIS, I will always be a musician.”
For further information, contact Christopher at (318) 357-5802.