Not the summit meeting of important industrial nations but rather an international union of another kind. Guitarists from Austria, Germany and Canada cross their musical borders with the motto, “Between 2 Continents on 8 Guitars.” The Canadian Guitar Quartet and the Salzburger Gitarrenquartett (Salzburg Guitar Quartet) have united to combine their talents for this extraordinary project. With their Austrian, German and Canadian performances, the G8 thrilled audiences with their perfect ensemble playing, virtuosity and spontaneous joy in playing together.
This unusual project began with a CD production of the Salzburg Guitar Quartet in which a composition of the French Canadian, Patrick Roux, was recorded among others. The Salzburg group contacted Roux’s publishers “d’Oz,” to find his email address. They made immediate contact with the composer and sent him a copy of the CD. Roux was delighted with the recording. An exciting exchange of emails began between Germany and Canada. Roux is a member of the Canadian Guitar Quartet. Eventually the idea came about to arrange an exchange tour. The result was finally not an exchange concert, but a cooperative project with eight guitarists. The suggestion from the Austrian broadcasting company, ORF, to commission compositions from Austrian composers was well received. Original works for eight guitars by Michael Buchrainer, “In my groove” and Gunter Schneider, “Roaring Guitars”, were created that were to be performed in a radio concert in Innsbruck.
After about two years of intensive planning, and without so much as a telephone call between the two groups, the Canadian Quartet was picked up at the airport by their Salzburg colleagues. They knew each other only through their internet contact and some photos, but they had fixed all the musical details beforehand since there was a rather limited time for rehearsing. After the first few minutes it was immediately clear that the musicians understood each other marvelously. Not only the delicious Austrian eating and drinking, but also our cooperative musical understanding took care of the fact that an absolutely homogeneous ensemble developed. After a few but extremely intensive rehearsals there was a premier performance in the sold-out Conference Center in St. Johann, Salzburg. Further concerts were given in Austria and Germany with works by Leo Brouwer, Patrick Roux, Alexander Orologio, Michael Buchrainer, Gunter Schneider and others.
Over the last twenty-five years, Jeffrey McFadden has established a place among the preeminent guitarists of his generation. He has performed throughout North America and Europe and has been a featured artist at important international music festivals, including Guitar ’87, The Guitar Foundation of America Convention, Gitarren-Symposium Iserlohn, The National Flute Association (USA) Convention, the Festival Mediterraneo della Chitarra, the Festival de Guitarra de Sevilla and many others.
In 1992, Jeffrey McFadden was Silver Medalist in the prestigious Guitar Foundation of America Competition and was a prize-winner in the 1993 Great Lakes Guitar Competition. His debut recording was the first in the Laureate Series on Naxos. He has recorded eight CDs since then, featuring the works of Fernando Sor, Napoléon Coste, Agustin Barrios, J.S. Bach and others. These recordings have sold tens of thousands of copies and received high critical praise. His performances and recordings continue to impress both critics and audiences. Recently, McFadden received the City of Hamilton Arts Award for Music – 2012.
From 2004-2012, McFadden performed a guitar duo in with American guitarist Andrew Zohn. The duo toured extensively and released two CD's, Duo Spiritoso and Duo Spiritoso Plays Granados (Clearnote).
Jeffrey McFadden was the first ever graduate of the Doctor of Musical Arts degree program at the University of Toronto. An Eaton Fellow, his research formed the basis of his groundbreaking book, Fretboard Harmony: Common-Practice Harmony on the Guitar, published in 2010 by Les Productions d’Oz.
McFadden is the founder and artistic director of the Sauble Beach Guitar Festival, and Senior Lecturer in Music at the University of Toronto. His students have garnered numerous competition prizes, awards and scholarships.
Sunday March 9th, 2014. 7pm
Hamilton Conservatory for the Arts
The Beneke/Rush Duo brings together two award-winning young guitarists, Eva Beneke (Germany) and Emma Rush (Canada). Beneke and Rush are both acclaimed solo artists performing throughout the world. In 2012, after a spontaneous performance at the International Guitar Symposium in Iserlohn, Germany, they combined their musical talents. The duo is quickly becoming known for their seamless ensemble playing and their passionate renditions of Spanish repertoire. Upcoming performances include a tour of the East Coast of Canada in the fall of 2013, spring 2014 dates throughout the United States and a prestigious tour of China in 2014. They will both be on faculty at the Hamilton International Guitar Festival in July 2013.