Music in Havana: A Study Tour
January 8–12, 2018

 Havana, Cuba Study Tour

Study tour participants will experience the vibrancy and diversity of Cuban musical expressions. From African-inspired rumba and jazz to orchestral and choral works, attendees will hear a plethora of live performances, meet musicians from a variety of traditions, and encounter first-hand the distinctive architecture, food, and culture that is uniquely Cuban.

Live musical performance is an essential component of Cuban musical life, and this dimension will be central to our Havana experience. The layered rhythmic intricacies, impeccable precision, and musical intensity associated with Cuban musical expression will create unforgettable experiences for all participants. Additional features include learning about other artistic media in Cuba and how historical forces and cultural influences have shaped Cuban musical identity.

Our three days of musical and cultural activities will include performances by the Cuban Symphony Orchestra, one of Havana’s many choirs, and rumba musicians, in addition to an evening of Cuban jazz at the famous Buena Vista Social Club. Participants will also visit a local music school and hear about music education in Cuba.


Monday, January 8
Arrive at José Martí International Airport (HAV)
Transfer to hotel Meliá Cohiba / hotel check-in
Orientation meeting with tour leader
Welcome dinner (included)

Tuesday, January 9
Breakfast in hotel
Informative exchange with artists from the Taller de la Gráfica artist collective
Visit the National Theater
Meet with the workers at a local cigar factory
Group Lunch (included)
Visit Callejon de Hamel, an artistic alley, where you will learn about African influences in Cuban art, music, and dance
Visit the Cuban symphony at the Amadeo Roldan Theater
Group Dinner (included)
Buena Vista Social Club show (included)

Wednesday, January 10
Breakfast in hotel
Discussion: “Cuba in Transition: Economic, Social and Political Changes 1990–present”
Visit a music school and interact with young artists
Group Lunch (included)
Visit EL Zorro y el Cuervo
Discussion with a Cuban jazz musician
Dinner on own

Thursday, January 11, 2018
Breakfast in hotel
Walking tour of Old Havana
Meet with local residents in their homes and learn about new private enterprises in Cuba
Group lunch (included)
Exchange with a local choir
Farewell dinner (included)

Friday, January 12, 2018
Breakfast in hotel
Hotel check-out
Transfer to José Martí International Airport / Departure

* Please note: A significant portion of programming is customized for each group. Some of the places listed above are not tourist destinations and are thus not always available. Therefore, this schedule should be considered as a sample only – please keep in mind that the itinerary is subject to change. Final itineraries are sent to registrants 1–2 weeks prior to departure.

Registration Fee
$3,804 Base Fee per Participant (double occupancy)
$1,400 Single Supplement Add-On Fee per Participant

Registration fees cover the following:

  • Certification of travel to Cuba under the U.S. Treasury Department’s general license
  • Airport transfers
  • Superior accommodations at the Meliá Cohiba or similar in Havana
  • Group meals as outlined in itinerary
  • Ground transportation & private Cuban driver
  • Experienced tour leader
  • Expert Cuban guide
  • Admission to all museums & cultural activities as outlined in itinerary
  • Travel guidebook
  • Gratuities for luggage handling, restaurant service, and programmed activities
  • Administrative support
  • Travel health insurance, emergency medical evacuation, and trip cancellation coverage (up to $1,000)
  • 24-hour emergency customer service hotline

The following expenses are not included and are the responsibility of each attendee:

  • Airfare to and from Havana
  • Gratuities for tour leader, Cuban guide, and driver (left to each guest’s discretion)

Commitment Deadline:  Monday, September 25, 2017 (12 noon CST)
Full Payment Deadline:  Sunday, October 8, 2017

A minimum of 10 participants is required for this study tour to be feasible. Those interested in attending are asked to send an email to project director William Everett stating that they are (a) planning to attend and (b) are confident they will be able to provide full payment on or before the payment deadline. Responses must be received no later than 12 noon CST on Monday, September 25, 2017. Following this deadline, Dr. Everett will confirm the status of the project and, if the minimum number of attendees has been satisfied, further instructions regarding how to make payment will follow.

Please note: Participants will register directly with, and make payment to, insightCuba. No monies or requested traveler information should be sent to CMS at any time.

For those interested in sharing accommodations, CMS provides an online bulletin board for locating potential roommates. Each traveler is responsible for securing his or her own roommate. Payment arrangements for shared rooms must be made between the involved parties.


This project is endorsed by The College Music Society as a CMS Professional Development event and is organized and managed by a third-party. All questions related to this event should be directed to Dr. William Everett, Project Director.