Described in the Washington Post as a percussionist of "marvelous virtuosity", Luis Garay is a classical, jazz and Afro-Latin multi-percussionist, composer, recording artist, and educator. Mr. Garay was born in Cordoba, Argentina. (Percussion Professor at Cordoba State Conservatory of Music, Master of Music from The Catholic University of America, Washington D.C. Additional advanced studies include the Escola de Musica de Brasilia in Brazil) He has been percussion soloist & director of Luis Garay Percussion World Ensemble since 1996. Mr. Garay is also artistic director, founder, and instructor of the Lion Drummers World Percussion Seminar which was founded in 1998. He has been associated with Washington Performing Arts Society (WPAS) and Concerts in the Schools since 2005. He has been on the faculty of St. Albans School & National Cathedral School in Washington, DC since 1998. During his 35 year career, he has performed throughout the Americas and Europe. He has received prestigious awards such as recognition by the U.S. government as an "Artist of Exceptional Ability" he performed for Pope John Paul II in the Vatican, he won the gold medal from the International Rotary Club, he received the Team Leadership Award from the Group Study Exchange Program, and he was awarded a fellowship from Amalia Lacroze de Fortabat through the Inter-American Music Friends at the Organization of American States and The Catholic University of America and Margot Fonteyn. Mr. Garay is a former principal timpanist of The Cordoba Symphony Orchestra (1978-1992). He was Adjunct Percussion Instructor and Director of the Catholic University Percussion Ensemble at The Catholic University of America from 1999-2003. He is founder of the Cordoba Jazz Quartet and former director of Youth Percussionists of Cordoba 1982-1992. He performed with the New Music Group of Cordoba and he was chairman, instructor & director of the percussion ensemble of the Cordoba State Conservatory of Music in Argentina for twelve years.
He has accompanied numerous top artists and has been a performer, instructor, adjudicator, clinician, director, founder, composer, and conductor of timpani and percussion for symphony orchestras, bands, jazz, and percussion ensembles. A well known percussionist in the nation's capitol, Mr. Garay's performances include the Kennedy Center, Wolf Trap, The Organization of American States, Department of State, Smithsonian Institution, The Argentine Embassy, DAR Constitution Hall & Washington National Cathedral, Strathmore Music Center, the Chinese Embassy, and a recording of the newly released CD “Celebrating Sacred Rhythms” with the Choral Arts Society. Luis Garay’s CD, Sacumba, is a collection of his original Afro-Latin compositions performed by his group, “Percussion World.” Mr. Garay is currently recording his second CD. He maintains a busy studio in Silver Spring, Md., where he runs his “World Percussion Program and teaches numerous private students. He is a member of The American Federation of Musicians, Washington, D.C. Local 161-710 and the Percussive Arts Society.