Venezuelan cellist Maria Gabriela Figueroa was born in Caracas, where she started her music education in Simon Bolivar Music Conservatory. Since the age of ten she was a member of the “National Infant Symphony Orchestra of Venezuela” created by Jose Antonio Abreu and El Sistema. Later she completed her music studies at the Conservatory, and holds a Degree in Cello Performance from Unearte, Venezuelan University of the Arts.
Mrs. Figueroa was a member of “Orquesta Sinfónica Simón Bolivar” for 13 years, participating in important tours through the world, working under the guidance of such conductors as Gustavo Dudamel, Claudio Abbado, Sir. Simon Rattle, among many others.
Mrs. Figueroa has also been very committed to education, discovering in teaching a great passion where her creative side can also be fully seized. She has taught children and young musicians of all ages in individual lessons and group coaching, in El Sistema and in Emil Friedman School.
Mrs. Figueroa has been living in New York for three years, playing as freelance in orchestras like Brooklyn Chamber Orchestra, Regina Opera, collaborating with artists such as Mark Gross + strings at Lincoln Center, Luisito Quintero, and Amazonas Strings. She is also a Suzuki teacher trained at School for Strings, and has been dedicated to El Sistema USA Program and Non Profit organizations as Union City Music Project, Opportunity Music Project and Bloomingdale School of Music.