The mission of the Koubek Center is to produce and present multi-disciplinary artistic programs that inspire, inform and entertain as well as build community through the arts. Creating and sharing art connects us to our city and to each other. The Koubek Center is a place for artists and local arts organizations to explore and experiment, engage in collaborations, and share their work with the community. Our programs are informed by a spirit of inclusion and cooperation, with a focus on highlighting emerging and established local artists, and providing opportunities for exceptionally talented individuals and underrepresented voices. Ultimately, we want to make the Koubek Center a meeting space for all Miamians; a welcoming, creative, and fun place that will make the residents of Little Havana proud.
The Austrian trader John J. Koubek built a Mediterranean-style mansion in 1929 as a gift to his beloved wife. After her passing, and aware of the bold history he saw unfolding around him—he donated the mansion to University of Miami with the condition that it be used to serve the community. For next several decades, it did just that—acting as a satellite campus to help arriving Cuban refugees learn English, obtain job training, and, for Cuban-trained doctors, engineers, lawyers and other professionals, prepare for their respective U.S. Board Exams. It also became a meeting place for Latin American cultural and political groups. In 2011, Miami Dade College acquired the Koubek Center and affirmed its commitment to the original mission.
Since its adoption into MDC’s family of iconic buildings, which include the Freedom Tower in downtown Miami and the Tower Theater in Little Havana, efforts have centered on Koubek’s physical and programmatic revitalization. Through partnerships with MDC Live Arts, Miami Book Fair, Cuatrogatos, Teatro Prometeo, and various consulates and community organizations, the Koubek has presented robust seasons of art exhibits, films, concerts, theatre and literary events.
The 2020-21 Season marked a new chapter in Koubek Center’s history— one in which the venue structured its programming around three signature programs that foster cultural dialogue and community development: Little Havana Social Club, En Residencia, and Picnic de Libros. Little Havana Social Club channels the spirit of the traditional Latin American and Caribbean fiesta de barrio informed by Miami’s hyperconnected, cosmopolitan culture; Picnic de Libros rethinks family picnics as day-long outings where kids engage with literature and performing arts; and En Residencia reimagines the Koubek as art incubator and setting for discovery, growth, and artistic adventure for creators, organizations, and the community.