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  Fernando Rocha (Bio)

Fernando Rocha has been professor of percussion at Minas Gerais Federal University (UFMG) since 1998. He holds a Master's Degree (MM) from UFMG and a Bachelor's Degree (BM) from Sao Paulo State University, where he studied with professors John Boudler and Carlos Stasi. He is currently on leave from his position to pursue his Doctor's Degree at McGill University in Montreal with D'Arcy Philip Gray. He has a scholarship from Brazilian Agency A.P.E.S.

As a performer Fernando Rocha has premiered some percussion works by composers such as Lewis Nielson, Almeida Prado, Sergio Freire, Nicolas Gilbert, Jacob Sudol, Rogerio Vieira and Mario Alfaro. In 2005, he appeared as solo performer at PASIC (Percussive Arts Society International Convention). Both as a solo and a chamber music performer, he has appeared in the most important music festivals in Brazil and also played in Argentina, USA, Portugal and Canada. He has also directed the UFMG Percusison Ensemble performing about 60 concerts from 2000 to 2004 and recording a CD with works by Brazilian composer Villa-Lobos arranged for percussion ensemble. In addition to working with contemporary music Fernando Rocha has played jazz vibes with some great Brazilian musicians, such as flutist Mauro Rodrigues, drummer Nenen, and guitar player Magno Alexandre. In 1997 he was awarded a scholarship to study jazz vibes in New York for 8 months with Joe Locke and Stefon Harris. He also played with Bobby Sanabria's Big Band.

Fernando Rocha has presented workshops, including one at the First Percussion Day organized in Brazil by PAS BRAZIL Chapter in 2001. In August 2004 he was the host of the First International Music Festival that took place in Belo Horizonte (Brazil), presenting about 20 percussion concerts and workshops with musicians from Brazil, USA, Portugal, France, Italy, Canada and Senegal.

Fernando Rocha