Home > Regions > Central America / Caribbean > Panama
Carlos Camacho Andres Carrizo Eduardo Charpentier
Roque Cordero Dino Nugent Samuel Robles
Clicking on any of the above names takes you to that composer's page on our website.

Music Education and Performance in Panama.

Just one year after achieving its independence, in 1904 Panama’s first national school of music was founded with diplomat and musician Narciso Garay (1876-1953) as its first director. This school closed for a time, but was re established in 1941 as the National Conservatory of Music, under the direction of violinist Alfredo de Saint-Malo (1898-1984), who had studied at the Paris Conservatory. Today the conservatory bears the name National Institute of Music
, and its director is Roberto Flórez. This institution admits both children and adults, and its principal objective is to provide professional training in music performance. At the conclusion of their program of studies studies receive a technical degree that is academically roughly equivalent to a U.S. high school diploma. Equally important is the music department of the University of Panama. Founded in 1972 by Eduardo Charpentier (1927), the department offers bachelor’s degrees in music performance. These two institutions are frequent collaborators, for example, a national piano competition was held last year. Panama’s national symphony orchestra was founded in 1941 under the direction of Herbert de Castro (1905-69). Unfortunately, in 1988 a political and social crisis caused a reduction in the size of the orchestra, but under the leadership of Efraín Abbo from 1992 to 1994 the orchestra was able to add the lost players back to its roster. Since 1994 the orchestra has been under the direction of Jorge Ledezma Bradley.

For more information about the music of this country, including links to conservatories, university music departments and other institutes and organizations, please see our country resource page for Panama.

Newsletter Sign Up ButtonWould you like to learn about our various projects and activities? How about what our composers are doing around the world? Yes? Then be sure to sign up for our monthly newsletter, the Cayambis Connection. Subscribers get special promotions and discounts, too.