Cuban American Youth Orchestra

A nonprofit organization

26 Donors

Performing the work of diplomacy on the world stage.

Thank you for your support! The Cuban American Youth Orchestra (CAYO), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is an ensemble of young American and Cuban musicians which promotes cultural diplomacy through collaboration, performance and education. In May 2019, our inaugural tour brought together 75 college-aged musicians from the US and Cuba to learn from each other and prepare two concerts in Havana and Matanzas, Cuba. CAYO is proud of our Minnesota roots, starting with the historic Minnesota Orchestra visit to Cuba in 2015 which helped usher in a new phase of US-Cuba relations. The opportunity and desire for mutual learning between the people of the US and Cuba is one of the sparks that created CAYO. 

Where does your gift go? 

  • give to chamber music workshops, like our February 2020 Havana Academy and Arts Delegation, where American and Cuban students collaborate side-by-side and US patrons join to experience cultural diplomacy in action
  • give to tours - we can't wait to get young people back out into the world
  • give to Minnesota and Cuba-based mentors who educate and support the next generation

CAYO strengthens communities here and abroad by

  • Empowering students to grow as global citizens as well as musicians.
  • Providing educational platforms for musical and cultural exchange 
  • Educating audiences in the US and Cuba about our shared humanity

The role of the artist as a bridge-builder as well as interpreter of rhythm and notes opens a world of possibility for young musicians. CAYO musicians and faculty return to their home cities and countries with more tools to bridge language and culture barriers. As reported by a tour participant, CAYO tours bring students, mentors and patrons “a new perspective of what music can do to bring people together”.  

Hear the magic from Havana this past May:

Your gift helps us move forward with educational and cultural programming in Minnesota and Cuba. CAYO tours, academies and delegations are traveling laboratories where students, professionals and audience members of each country meet their neighbors, challenge and inspire one another, and perform the work of diplomacy on the world stage.

“I saw the greater purpose I can serve in the world as a musician.”

—CAYO participant, 2019 Juntos en Armonía tour to Cuba

Organization Data


Organization name

Cuban American Youth Orchestra

Tax id (EIN)



Arts & Culture Education International

BIPOC community

BIPOC serving

Significantly impacted by pandemic

Significantly impacted by pandemic


3700 36TH AVE S



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