Rodrigo Garcia is a pianist with more than 30 years of experience as a freelance musician and 20 years of experience as a dedicated piano teacher. He received his formal musical education with emphasis in classical piano at the Conservatory Antonio Maria Valencia in Cali-Colombia, his native city, under the tutelage of teacher Marjorie Tanaka, from 1986 to 1995. Rodrigo grew up in a musical household where both his parents were renowned folk musicians who used to tour all over Colombia and would often appear in the leading Colombian musical TV shows of the moment. With his dad a prolific composer of Colombian folk songs and a guitar player, and his mom an accomplished singer, Rodrigo acquired a passion for the popular styles of music from an early age, and, is now a specialist in the styles of jazz, rock, pop, ballad, folklore, fusion and electroacoustic music. To further his studies, in 1997 Rodrigo went to The Bruckner Conservatorium of Jazz in Linz Austria for an intensive year of Piano jazz and Ensemble studies where he studied under the guidance of Dean Pechenko.
Rodrigo’s professional highlights include being faculty at the INCCA University of Colombia from 2005 to 2016, where he served as professor of undergraduate piano students teaching classical and jazz piano, and also served as collaborative faculty. He also taught at private music schools such as Fernando Sor School of Music, the Youth Orchestra of Colombia program in Bogotá Colombia, where he taught students from pre-K to high school age, and the Conservatory Antonio Maria Valencia in Cali Colombia, from the years of 2000 to 2005, where he also served as piano and collaborative faculty.
As a freelance pianist and composer, he has toured through the major cities of Colombia and South America with renowned groups and companies such as Azul Trabuco, a group with jazz, salsa, and fusion flares, Tribu Perdida, an integrated company of artists, where Rodrigo served as pianist and composer of their film, circus, and dance music, and Rapsoda, as pianist of famous Latin American singers such as Sabú, Elio Roca, Manolo Galván, Nicola Divari, Tormenta, Los Ángeles Negros, Los Pasteles Verdes, Los Terrícolas, Los Demonios, Tania, Claudia de Colombia, among others.
Rodrigo also worked as the accompanist for the Santiago De Cali City Ballet from the years of 2000-2003, and 2006. As a composer, his music has been featured in films such as Colombian film “Entre Cuartos” by Luis Merino in 2001, and Colombian film Riverside by Harold Trompetero in 2009, he has also composed jingles for Colombian TV commercials for local channels.
International performances include playing with the famous Colombian singer Beatriz Arellano at Colombia’s embassy in South Africa in 2004, and as keyboardist of Azul Trabuco at the 2019 South by Southwest Music Festival in Austin TX.
Rodrigo enjoys teaching students of all ages and his teaching philosophy focuses on building upon the strengths of students to continue unlocking their limitless potential.