Posts from ‘Artist Spotlight’
One of the leading flamenco and classical guitarist/composers of his generation, Adam del Monte has made it his life mission to fully express himself in these two genres, transcending labeling and convention. Always having incorporated a wide array of musical styles in his compositions, del Monte has embarked on a journey of creating a unique sound and language of flamenco that is both steeped in tradition and progressive in its openness to musical flavors from around the world.
Olivier Chassain was born in Paris, France in 1957. He began studying the guitar in Limousin with Roger Généraux and later became a well-rounded and founded guitarist under the guidance of Carel Harms. In 1977, Olivier was admitted to the Conservatoire de Paris where, in 1982, he earned a premier prize for his studies in guitar with Alexandre Lagoya; that same year, he also won a prize in counterpoint studies under Bernard de Crépy and one in harmony studies with Roger Boutry.
José Fernández Torres “Tomatito” was born in Almería in 1958, in the Pescadería neighbourhood. His family is associated with Almería since many generations back and has an inherent musical tradition. His Grandfather Miguel Fernández Cortés “El Tomate” was a well-known figure at private parties at the turn of the century and among the young aficionados of Almería’s traditional musical evenings, at which he played duets with his brother Antonio.
When Scott Tennant came by to play some of the Cleveland Collection guitars late last year he more or less fell in love with the 1969 Ramirez that Segovia had owned and played from 1969 to 1980. When he told us he was about to record a CD of Segovia’s compositions we all had a Eureka moment and realized he had to record the CD using this guitar. The CD will be produced by the Guitar CoOp in Brazil (which is headed by our friend Marcelo Kayath) but we will record it here in Santa Monica.
Eduardo Fernández is recognized as one of today’s leading guitarists. Born in 1952 in Uruguay, he began his studies of guitar at age 7. His principal teachers were Abel Carlevaro, Guido Santórsola and Héctor Tosar. After being prized in several international competitions, the most notable being the 1972 Porto Alegre (Brazil) and 1975 Radio France (Paris) competitions, he won the first prize of the 1975 Andrés Segovia Competition in Mallorca (Spain). His New York debut in 1977 won critical accolades, being described as “A top guitarist…Rarely has this reviewer heard a more impressive debut recital on any instrument” (Donal Henahan, The New York Times). Fernández has returned to the U.S.A. almost every season since then, playing with prestigious orchestras as well as giving recitals, always to great acclaim from critics and audiences. His London debut, in Wigmore Hall (1983), had also a great impact, and resulted in his signing an exclusive recording contract with Decca, a label for which he made 18 recordings (solos, and with the English Chamber Orchestra and the London Philharmonic), that cover a wide section of the repertoire, from Bach to the contemporary.
Göran Söllscher (born 31 December 1955) is a Swedish award-winning virtuoso classical guitarist known for his broad range of musical interpretations, ranging from Bach to the Beatles. Söllscher’s international career began during his years of education at the Royal Conservatory of Copenhagen in Copenhagen, Denmark when at the age of 23, he won the Concours International de Guitare in Paris, 1978. He was signed by German record label Deutsche Grammophon, the largest label featuring classical guitarists. As of 2005, Söllscher had released 19 records, which altogether have sold over a million copies.
David Leisner is an extraordinarily versatile musician with a multi-faceted career as an electrifying performing artist, a distinguished composer, and a master teacher.
Guitarist Eliot Fisk is known worldwide as a charismatic performer famed for his adventurous and virtuosic repertoire. He is also celebrated for his willingness to take art music into unusual venues (including schools, senior centers, logging camps and prisons). After 45 years before the public he remains, as his mentor Andrés Segovia once wrote, “at the top line of our artistic world.”
Artistic director of 92nd Street Y’s Art of the Guitar series since 2006, chair of the guitar department at the Yale University School of Music and artistic director of the bi-annual Yale Guitar Extravaganza since 1985, Benjamin Verdery is hailed for his innovative and eclectic musical career.
John Dearman is one of the most recognized figures in the classical guitar world today. As a member of the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, he has concertized world-wide for more than thirty years, appearing in the major concert halls and international festivals. His work with the quartet has resulted in more than a dozen recordings including the Grammy Award winning “LAGQ’s Guitar Heroes” in 2007. Concert appearances with LAGQ include: Alice Tulley Hall; Weil Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall; the Hollywood Bowl; Orchestra Hall, Chicago; Herbst Theater, San Francisco; Tokyo Opera City; Queen Elizabeth Hall, London; the Concertgebow, Amsterdam; the Kleine Philharmonie, Berlin; Auditorio Nacional, Spain; National Concert Hall, Beijing; House of Music, Moscow; and International arts festivals in Singapore, Istanbul, Mexico and Hong Kong.