Robert Farias conductor and composer, was born in Cubatão, São Paulo Brazil. He began his musical studies at age seven and by eleven years old he was already producing arrangements for band. With links to the musical initiatives of Cubatão, he created in 1970 the Afonso Schmidt Musical Band. (the current Cubatão Symphonic Band).
Mr Farias graduated from the Santos College of Music where he later assumed the chairs of Instrumental Literature, Musical Appreciation and Superior Instrument.
He also studied Orchestral Direction with the German conductor Paul Bernard and attended courses in Direction with other renowned masters as William Nichols USA Gerard Devos France, Fàbio Mechetti Brazil and the celebrated Eleazar de Carvalho. In parallel to his studies of composition, instrument and orchestration, Mr Farias developed an intense instrumental career of orchestra and choral conductor.
Mr Farias was Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of Santos Symphonic Orchestra from 1983 to 1992 as well as Petrobràs Choir from 1987 to 1992. In 1987 he assumed the position of Artistic Director, of the Sâo Paulo State Symphonic Band. In 1989 he led them to the status of a professional group, and remained as Artistic Director and Principle Conductor until 2000. During this period, besides the work of pioneering the diffusion of the universal original repertoire for symphonic band, he undertook one of many more important projects of incentives to the musical creation, promoting to world premieres the first of many works commissioned by renowned Brazilian composers such as Ronaldo Miranda, Mário Ficarelli, Lelo Nazário, Amaral Vieira, Luiz Carlos Csekö, Harry Crowl, Daniel Havens, Achille Picchi, Edmundo Villani-Côrtes, Roberto Sion, André Mehmari, Cyro Pereira, Nelson Ayres, Marlos Nobre, Almeida Prado, between others. This initiative gained national and international renown, several performances were approved for significant events like the Campos o Jordão Winter Festival, Guiomar Novaes Musical Week and the Biennial Brazilian Contemporary Music (Rio de Janeiro).
In 1997, with the São Paulo State Symphonic Band, Mr Farias participated at the 8th WASBE Conference in Austria, as Latin-American representative and in 1999, he was among fourteen symphonic bands selected for the 9th Conference in California, USA. Mr Farias is internationally acclaimed as being one of the most outstanding conductors of symphonic band of Latin America, having been the first Brazilian to integrate as the Advice Director of WASBE – World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles (1999-2005). Mr Farias has repeatedly been invited as Regent to conduct before the most important symphonic directions in Latin American, between them the Montevideo Symphonic Band (Uruguay), Cordoba Symphonic Band and Buenos Aires Symphonic Band (Argentina). While in the United States, he visited the University of Pennsylvania Wind Ensemble and the United States of America Air Force Academy Symphonic Band and in Brazil, he was invited to conduct the City of Americana Symphonic Orchestra, the São Paulo Municipal Theater Symphonic Orchestra, Campinas Symphonic Orchestra, Federal University of Minas Gerais Symphonic Band. Besides conducting many master classes. From 1990, Mr Farias has been, Teacher of Orchestral Direction at the Tom Jobim Musical Studies Center – Free University of Music. During all principal holidays, Mr Farias has participated as Regent to Symphonic Bands during courses at Campos do Jordão International Winter Festival, Curitiba Summer Music Workshop (1990-2000), Londrina Music Festival (2000), Panel “Funarte” for Instrumentalists and Band Conductors (2000 to 2004) and Brasília International Summer Course (from 2002). There have been many newspaper articles written about his outstanding career as: Best Conductor of 1981, for the São Paulo State Legislative Assembly; Best Conductor of 1990, for the Sao Paulo Association for Critics of Art; Banespa Prize of Music “ International Distinction ” - 1993; “Afonso Schmidt “ Cultural Merit Medal – 1994; Prize Carlos Gomes – 1998).
In 2001, under the auspices of the Petrobrás, he premiered his the most recent work Cubatão 2001 – Symphonic Fantasy for narrator, Childlike Chorus, Mixed Chorus, Renascentist Ensemble and Symphonic Band. In 2006, Mr Farias premiered his original composition, Abertura Exótica conducting the Symphonic Band of the City of Buenos Aires. Mr Farias is a member of the APCA – Sao Paulo Association for Critics of Art and since 2005, Artistic Coordinator of the Musical Ensembles of Cubatão (São Paulo, Brazil).