An artist defined by the critics as ‘..tender, lyrical, loaded with personality,’ (Atlanta Journal Constitution, Pierre Ruhe), violist Juan-Miguel Hernandez is also recognised for drawing ‘... the sweetest, most sonorous tone ..’ (Washington Post, Charles T, Downey). In September 2009, Juan-Miguel won the First Prize at the 16th International Johannes Brahms Competition in Austria, adding to other top prizes won at the National Canadian Music Competition and the 9th National Sphinx Competition in 2006 presented by J.P. Morgan Chase. As a featured guest soloist, Juan-Miguel has appeared with the Atlanta, Seattle, Colorado Symphonies, the Rochester Philharmonic and the Chicago Sinfonietta. Performances in recent seasons have brought Juan-Miguel on tour throughout Europe. In 2010 he was recognized with the medal of the National Assembly of Quebec.
Juan-Miguel has collaborated with distinguished artists such as Itzhak Perlman, Lynn Harrell, Matt Haimovitz, Kim Kashkashian, Gerard Caussé, Nicolas Dautricourt, Misha Dichter, the Weilerstein Trio as well as Jazz living legends such as Chick Corea, Gary Burton and Stanley Clark and Paquito D’Riviera. Recent festival and program appearances as guest artist and teacher include the Festival Pablo Casals (Prades, France), the Festival des Arcs (France), the Amalfi Coast Music Festival (Italy), Festival des Graves (Bordeaux, France), Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival (South Africa), the Salzburg Festival, the Brevard Summer Institute, the Mozaic Festival, Festicamara (Colombia), Montreal Jazz and Panama Jazz Festivals and Musica Mundi International Festival (Belgium).
A dedicated chamber musician, Juan-Miguel is the newest member of the legendary Fine Arts Quartet, an original member of the Harlem Quartet, as well as founder and member of ‘Trio Virado’ (flute, viola, guitar) and ‘Boreal Trio’ (clarinet, viola, piano), both specializing in the creation of new repertoire. From 2005 to 2010, he was also an active member of I Palpiti orchestra, a cast of international laureates forming a world class string orchestra, based in Los Angeles.
On radio airwaves and television broadcasts, Juan-Miguel has been seen and heard on nationally syndicated programmes throughout Canada and the United States, including NBC’s Good Morning America, The Today Show and Telemundo Network. His discography includes four quartet CDs released on the Naxos, Cedille records, the White Pine and Navona labels as well as multiple collaborations on various other labels including the album ‘Hot House’ playing alongside Chick Corea and Gary Burton, for which they won a Grammy, as well as Norah Jones’ album ‘Broken Little Hearts’. The autumn of 2015 saw the release of Trio Virado’s debut album ‘Mangabeira’ featuring music by Piazzolla, Leo Brouwer and original music by Sergio Assad.
His strong commitment to educate and engage new audiences all around the globe has brought him to reach young musicians and various communities through art convoys in South Africa and Venezuela, various music festivals in South America and outreach projects in Europe and North America. In September 2016 Juan-Miguel was appointed to the faculty of the prestigious Royal Academy of Music in London as Professor of Viola.
Born in Montreal, Canada in 1985, Juan-Miguel started studying violin at the age of seven, then switched to viola at the age of twelve under the tutelage of Jean McRae. He plays on a beautiful Miralles viola from Altadena CA.