International Guitar Festival returns to Radford


International guitarists will bring their skills to campus for the 14th Annual Radford University International Guitar Festival.

The festival, an annual fixture celebrating the rich music of stringed instruments, runs April 10-12 in the Performance Hall in the Covington Center.

This festival’s line up of performers includes Enrique Muñoz (Spain) playing modern six-single-stringed guitar styles of Spanish and Italian origin, Martha Masters (USA), Richard Stone (USA) playing the unique theorbo and baroque lute, Marco Battaglia (Italy) playing an original 19th century Fabbricatore guitar, Boris Diaz (Cuba/Mexico) and RU alumnus Kareem McCullough.

“Each performer was selected for the diversity of programming, specific expertise and unique approach to performing they bring to our festival year," said Robert Trent, RU music professor and festival director.

This year’s festival features the first time guitarists from Spain and Cuba have played the venue. Muñoz, of Spain, brings a repertoire from his culture to the festival. Diaz, of Cuba, will highlight music of Latin America.

For Trent, it was also important to showcase male and female virtuosos.

“Martha Masters continues our tradition of bringing the best women guitarists to the campus; but also, a fabulous performer and teacher regardless of gender,” said Trent.

The Youth/Community Guitar Orchestra performance with the RU Honor’s Guitar Quartet is another festival tradition. This concert will be held at 11 a.m. on April 11. The orchestra encompasses very young Suzuki students ranging from age six to 18, and adults from the community. The group's only rehearsal is an hour before the performance and takes place in front of the public.

The audience can also gain a deeper understanding the practice and presentation of live classical music by attending master classes with Stone, Muñoz, Masters, Battaglia and Diaz. Presented onstage, master classes feature RU students who have previously auditioned for the privilege to learn guitar techniques from festival performers.

Two lectures are included with these master classes: a lecture by Battaglia on 19th century performance practice and one by Stone on Baroque performance practice.

New this year is a question and answer forum on careers for classical guitarists, hosted by Ryan Book, RU guitar faculty member, arts administrator and alumnus.

To view the schedule and event information, please visit the International Guitar Festival website. For more information, call the RU Department of Music at (540) 831-5177.

Apr 7, 2015