This year’s festival will be an online event! Along with high-quality performances from MBAW’s illustrious past program and festival artists, this virtual summit will include live panel discussions with prominent artists and respected arts leaders who will share their unique insight into the current state of the arts and future of performing arts.

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All times listed are in U.S Central Standard Time

*Event timings are subject to change.

12:00 PM

Welcome Address | San Antonio Mayor, Ron Nirenberg

12:05 – 12:55 PM

LEADERSHIP PANEL: Arts in a Pandemic Era + Resilience and Vision for the Future

What role does state and private philanthropy play in helping artists and arts organizations survive the shutdown caused by the pandemic? With an infusion of federal relief funds at the National Endowment for the Arts and the Ford Foundation doubling down to ensure their survival, how do these organizations see the future of arts and culture in our society? We’ll also hear from the Sphinx Organization on the challenges of equity and diversity in the arts and their vision for the future.


  • Suhail Arastu (Moderator)
  • Francisco G. Cigarroa, MD
  • Afa Dworkin
  • Sunil Iyengar

12:55 – 1:00 PM

Musical Sprouts | Arts in Education – Putting the “A” in STEAM!

1:00 – 1:30 PM

Musical Reflections I

Select performances from MBAW’s past festivals and concert programs:

  • Barynya | Russia
  • Mark Cheikhet, violin & Valery Grokhovski, piano | Russia
  • Estefania Ramirez, flamenco dancer (Entreflamenco) | Spain
  • Jiale Li, piano | China
  • JP Jofre, bandoneon | Argentina

1:30 – 2:20 PM

ARTIST PANEL: Survival & Revival!

With concert halls closed for the better part of a year and tours cancelled, how have professional artists survived? We’ll hear reflections from a conductor, musician and singer and hear their perspectives on the future of the performing arts. We invite our audience to engage this live panel of renown artists!


  • Mei Rui, DMA (Moderator)
  • Sebastian Lang-Lessing
  • Mané Galoyan
  • Dr. Cristina Pato

2:20 – 2:30 PM

Chair Yoga

Join us for a 10 minute rejuvenation of mind and body without leaving your desk. Suhail Arastu guides us to reset with a simple and effective mid-day break!

2:30 – 3:00 PM

Musical Reflections II

Select performances from MBAW’s past festivals and concert programs:

  • Jolente De Maeyer, violin & Nikolaas Kende, piano | Belgium
  • Mané Galoyan, soprano | Armenia
  • Oliver Rajamani, guitar & percussion | India
  • Kevork Mourad, visual artist | Syria
  • Kinan Azmeh, clarinet | Syria

3:00 – 3:50 PM

Stories with Superwomen

All moms are superwomen! How do they do it? Raising children, maintaining a household and working? We’ll hear stories and anecdotes from a few superwomen and undoubtedly share laughter and tears as we explore epic fails and successes of homeschooling, maintaining our careers and some semblance of sanity while sheltering in place and what it has taught us about ourselves and our world. We invite you to share your challenges, best practices and how you’ve coped, adapted and continue to thrive!

3:50 – 4:35 PM

Journey to Japan

Shinobi flutist and taiko drummer Kaoru Watanabe and koto and shamisen player Yoko Reikano Kimura take kids on an adventure through the rich history of Japanese music and culture. The concert is also a part of our Kids to Concerts program lineup for April that will be sent online to over 200 participating schools.

4:35 – 4:45 PM

Closing Remarks

Musical Bridges’ Founder & CEO, Anya Grokhovski shares her reflections on MBAW’s inaugural virtual Summit and International Music Festival!


Suhail Arastu (Moderator)

Global Arts Envoy | Sister Cities International
Advancement | Musical Bridges Around the World

Francisco G. Cigarroa, MD

Chairman | Ford Foundation Board of Trustees

Afa Dworkin

President and Artistic Director
The Sphinx Organization

Sunil Iyengar

Director of Research & Analysis
National Endowment for the Arts

Mei Rui, DMA (Moderator)

Pianist, Assistant Professor
Weill Cornell Medicine & Houston Methodist

Sebastian Lang-Lessing

Conductor, Music Director

Mané Galoyan


Adriana Flores

Dr. Cristina Pato

Galician Bagpiper, Pianist, Writer, Educator and Producer

Diana Osborne

Diana Osborne (Moderator)

Office & Grants Manager
Musical Bridges Around the World

Adriana Flores

Adriana Flores

Vice President | Alamo Music Center

Adriana Flores

Nicole Randall, MDY

Senior Vice President | People to People International

Adriana Flores

Claudia Hucks

Customer Engagement Management | NTT Data Services

Diana Osborne

Ron Nirenberg

Mayor | City of San Antonio
Global Advisory Council Member | MBAW

Adriana Flores

Anya Grokhovski, DMA

CEO & Artistic Director | Musical Bridges Around the World




Estefania Ramirez

Estefania Ramirez

Flamenco Dancer | Spain

Oliver Rajamani

Guitar & Percussion | India

Jiale Li

Piano | China

Jolente De Maeyer

Jolente De Maeyer

Violin | Belgium

Nikolaas Kende

Nikolaas Kende

Piano | Belgium

JP Jofre

Bandoneon | Argentina

Kevork Mourad

Kevork Mourad

Visual Artist | Syria

Kinan Azmeh

Clarinet | Syria

Mane Galoyan

Mané Galoyan

Soprano | Armenia

Mark Cheikheit

Violin | Russia

Valery Grokhovski

Piano | Russia


National Endowment for the Arts
Department of Arts & Culture
Texas Commission on the Arts
Ford Foundation


World Affairs Council
World Affairs Council