Fernanda Lastra


Born in Mar del Plata, Argentina, Fernanda Lastra is a passionate and creative conductor interested in a wide variety of repertoire, including symphonic, contemporary, and operatic works. She is a dedicated advocate for Latin American composers, particularly those from her home country.

In 2022, Fernanda was appointed as the Conductor Diversity Fellow at the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, under the mentorship of JoAnn Falletta, and was promoted to Assistant Conductor, Diversity Fellow in 2023. In this role, she fulfills various conducting responsibilities, including cover conductor and main conductor for the BPO Kids and Music for Youth concert series. Fernanda actively contributes to the BPO’s artistic team, music education committee, and Diversity Council.

Fernanda has led professional and youth orchestras across the United States, Argentina, and Brazil. Her previous engagements include conducting the National Orchestra of Argentine Music “Juan de Dios Filiberto” at the CCK National Auditorium in Buenos Aires, and the production of Missy Mazzoli’s opera, Song from the Uproar, in Pittsburgh. Fernanda has also made significant contributions as an educator, serving as the Director of Orchestras at Augustana College (IL) and as conductor for the Central Pennsylvania Youth Orchestra, among other engagements. As an entrepreneur, Fernanda founded a training ensemble in Argentina in 2013, serving as its artistic director for four years.

Trained as a pianist, Fernanda holds two bachelor’s degrees from La Plata University in Argentina, a master’s degree from Penn State University, and a doctoral degree from the University of Iowa. Fernanda believes in the power of music to create meaningful connections with one another.