2020 Featured Artists

Iliana Matos

Iliana Matos

Hailed by the critics as “The guitar guru” (E-Veritas. University of Miami) “the powerful and intense style of Iliana Matos” (Classical Guitar Magazine) has made possible an extraordinary career, following the tradition of María Luisa Anido, who, when hearing Iliana play, wrote: “I am impressed by your wonderful guitaristic art, and I am proud to know that a woman (and a Cuban woman!) came to such a degree of artistic perfection”.  

Prize winner of eleven major international competitions, including first prizes in the Andrés Segovia in Palma de Mallorca, Luys Milán, and Manuel Ponce International Guitar Competitions. She made history by becoming the first woman to win the prestigious S.A.R. La Infanta Doña Cristina International Guitar Competition, and the only person to win the special prize for Best Interpretation of Spanish Music in two consecutive years, 1995 and 1996. 

Her highly acclaimed GSP CD “Angels in The Street” has earned universal acclaim from critics, placing her among the elite of today’s classical guitarists: “Her name deserves to go down in guitar history as one of the great players of our time.” (Classical Guitar Magazine); “a match-made-in-heaven recording that is about as perfect as guitar records get… she simply, radiantly shines, a virtuoso in service to the music” (American Record Guide); “she has sufficient of all credentials necessary to take her place in the annals of guitar as one of its truly gifted and outstanding exponents” (Musicweb-international.com), “it’s impossible while listening to ‘Angels’ to believe that her name will not someday ring the same peal of recognition as does Bream and Williams” (Minor7th.com). 

She was included in the Dictionary of the Spanish and Latin American Music, SGAE and Supplement of the Encyclopedia of the Guitar, and her CD “Angels in the Street” was listed in the “Guitar’s TOP 100″ written by the Canadian musicologist Enrique Robichaud. 

Living in Spain for the past 20 years, she has contributed to the development of a new generation of Spanish guitarists while teaching at the Conservatory of the Balearics, the Conservatory of Salamanca and the Royal Music Conservatory of Madrid. In addition to this, she regularly gives master classes all over the world and has performed extensively throughout Latin American, USA, Europe, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Currently, Mrs. Matos serves on the faculty at University of Lethbridge Faculty of Arts & Science where she is head of guitar studies.

Over the past three decades, Iliana Matos has established herself as one of the world´s preeminent classical guitarists. As part of her world tour “Celebrating 30th Anniversary as a Performer” in 2016, legendary Spanish-Cuban virtuoso Iliana Matos completed a tour of 19 cities in China, including a concert at the Shenyang International Guitar Festival. North American tour have included concerts in 23 cities, being featured by prestigious universities, guitar societies and festivals. In Mexico, she completed a tour of 7 cities, including concert and masterclass at the International Guitar Festival organized by the Conservatory National of Mexico.

Matthew Anderson

Matthew Anderson

A native to the Northwest, Matthew Anderson is a graduate from the Classical Guitar Performance Program at Cornish College of the Arts and an educator with an emphasis on Baroque and Latin American styles. He was a soloist at St. James Cathedral from 1997 to 2007, where he specialized in the works of J. S. Bach. A proponent of new music also, he premiered Kevin Callahan’s The Fourth Stream in 2011, which was inspired by Seattle’s golden jazz-club era and the music of Jimi Hendrix. Since 2016 he has been playing the 10-string classical guitar for the music of Egberto Gismonti, naming his project Cathedral of Trees after Gismonti’s musical compositions inspired by the rainforest.

Neil and Tamara Caulkins

Neil and Tamara Caulkins

Leon Christian

Leon Christian

Mario Diaz

Mario Diaz

Cameron O’Conner

Cameron O’Conner

Award-winning and acclaimed as “stunning and emotive” (Eugene Register-Guard), Cameron O’Connor enjoys a diverse career in solo, chamber, and contemporary music. Recent and upcoming highlights include solo and duo recitals throughout Japan; chamber music and opera appearances with Eugene Opera and musicians of the Oregon Symphony in their Classical Up Close concert series; as a chamber music soloist at the New World Symphony in Miami; appearing as a guest artist and performing duos with Sharon Isbin at the Aspen Music Festival and School; performing with Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony; and appearing under the baton of Chinese composer Tan Dun in his Eastern-tinged Concerto for Six, for which the New York Times noted that “O’Connor fluttered on his guitar strings in a manner reminiscent of a pipa player’s technique.” He is furthermore a prizewinner in many international competitions, including the Frances Walton and Tokyo International Guitar Competitions. His performances have been featured on Seattle’s Classical 98.1 KingFM, Portland All-Classical, American Public Media’s Performance Today, and KPFK’s Global Village. As a composer, O’Connor’s music has gained international recognition; his Three Northwestern Scenes was chosen for a performance at the 21st Century Guitar Conference in Ottawa, Canada, and his Perturbation Variations was the winner of both the 2019 Keene State College Call for Scores and the “Outstanding Winner” second prize at the Changsha International Guitar Festival in China. O’Connor also performs regularly for musical theatre productions on electric guitar, banjo, and mandolin, as well as in early music settings on the vihuela and lute. O’Connor was a full scholarship recipient at CSU Northridge; the Juilliard School in New York City; and at the USC Thornton School of Music. In 2015, The Thornton School recognized him as the Outstanding Doctoral Graduate.

Alexander Dunn

Alexander Dunn

Hilary Field

Hilary Field

International performing and recording artist, Hilary Field, has garnered praise for her dynamic virtuosity, her sensitive musicianship, and for the emotional depth she brings to the heart of classical guitar music. Hilary has held faculty positions as the head of the Guitar department at Seattle Pacific University and Pacific Lutheran University in Washington State. Hilary is a past winner of the Northwest Young Artist Series Competition and was the first guitarist to win the Frances Walton Soloist Competition. She has released several award winning CDs, including her debut recording, Music of Spain and Latin America, which was an award winner for Classical Album of the Year by the National Association of Independent Record Distributors. Other CDs include Ballad Stories, Siente, Cantilena, Airoso – guitar and viola, and Premieres. Hilary was recently sponsored by the US Embassy to perform and tour in South America, and has been a featured performer in international guitar festivals such as Festival Entrecuerdas in Chile, Festival Internacional de Guitarra ICPNA in Perú, Série Grands Concerts in Québec, the Long Island Guitar Festival in New York, and the Guitar Masters Series in Orlando, Florida. She has received grants for composing and performing new music by the Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, 4Culture, and Artist Trust. Soundboard, the official magazine of the Guitar Foundation of America notes “Field plays everything with a refined musicality, immaculate technique, and unfailingly lovely sound.” The Seattle Times exclaims that classical guitarist, “Hilary Field, is a dynamic player. She doesn’t just recite what can often be complex work, but imbues it with fire and grace.”

Duo Tenebroso

Duo Tenebroso (David Franzen and Kristen Waligora)

Duo Tenebroso is one of the premiere emerging classical guitar duos on the scene. Their critically-acclaimed debut album from 2018 has been featured on NPR as well as Classical Guitar Magazine. Members David and Kristen have performed with legend Angel Romero, been featured on BBC, and have performed with countless orchestras and as soloists throughout Italy, Germany, Central America, the United States, and Canada. 

Kristen and David have a rare connection and sensitivity to each other, the music, and the audience that creates a magical atmosphere of electricity in their concerts and their recordings. Duo Tenebroso champions the work of female composers including new commissions and transcriptions to expand the guitar repertoire as well as many works by living composers and undiscovered classics. They play music that has never before been played on classical guitar and program a fresh mix of Romantic, Baroque, living composers, and female composers to all of their programs.

The name Duo Tenebroso is inspired by the painting style of Tenebrism which employs extreme contrasts of dark and light, with darkness being the predominant feature to allow a spotlight on the subject. In much the same way, Duo Tenebroso strives to use the language of music to illuminate the spirit.

Sam Krahn

Sam Krahn

Sam Krahn is a composer, guitarist, and teacher. His works have been performed by members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Zeitgeist New Music Ensemble, TAK Ensemble, the Fidelio Trio, Ensemble Uusinta, Ensemble Dal Niente, Duo Gelland, the Cascade Quartet, the Acute Trio, the Artemis Vocal Ensemble, Strains New Music Ensemble, the Virginia Tech New Music Ensemble, the Gregorian Singers, Benjamin Cold, Bill Solomon, and many others. He has received numerous commissions to compose new works for Ed Harrison of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra (Maraca Concerto), Duo Gelland (Butoh Study #1, Resistance/Resonance), Nexus Duo (Moon Forms), Bill Solomon (Cascade/Noise Generator), Great Falls Symphony (Sounds for Silent Film), Harper College (Spring Dirge), Benjamin Cold (flux-mirror), and the Anaphora Contemporary Ensemble (String Quartet No. 1). In December of 2015, his first musical comedy, An Evening with Krampus was premiered in a 5-show run at the Phoenix Theater in Minneapolis.

He participated in the 17th World Saxophone Congress and Festival, the MATA Festival in New York City, the Source Song Festival in Minneapolis, the 2015 Root Signals Electronic Music Festival, and the 70th annual Cheltenham Music Festival in England. He received a grant from New Music USA for a new 35-minute work for saxophone and electronics and was a recipient of the 2017 Montana Arts Council Artist’s Innovation Award. Sam is a founding member of the Minnesota composer collective, 113. He also founded the Montana Improvisers Orchestra in Great Falls, Montana, and directed the ensemble from 2016-2018. He currently teaches at Green River College in Auburn, WA.

Scott Kritzer

Scott Kritzer

Jessica Papkoff

Jessica Papkoff

Jessica Papkoff is an award-winning guitarist known for her intelligent musicianship, emotional intensity and clean technique. She started playing guitar at age six, made her solo recital debut at age sixteen and her concerto debut two years later in the San Francisco Bay Area as the winner of the Contra Costa Symphony’s Young Musician’s Award performing Joaquin Rodrigo’s “Fantasia para un Gentilhombre” with the orchestra. Jessica earned a B.A. in Music from the University of California at Davis and a Master of Music degree from the Yale School of Music. Jessica has studied privately and in master classes with many of the world’s finest guitarists including Eliot Fisk, Oscar Ghiglia, Sharon Isbin, Pepe Romero, Abel Carlevaro, Michael Lorimer and George Sakellariou. Ms. Papkoff has performed solo, duo and chamber music on the East and West coasts including concerts at the Trinity Church Guitar Concert Series in New York City, the Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, CT, U.C. Berkeley’s Hertz Hall, Tacoma Art Museum, Seattle’s Bumbershoot Festival, Bellevue Art Museum and many other venues. Jessica’s debut CD, Impressions, featuring the music of Turina, Villa-Lobos, Debussy, Carlevaro and others, was the winner of Acoustic Guitar Magazine’s Homegrown CD Award. Jessica has been featured on several other CDs, including those by Grammy nominee Henta Ellis, “Beautiful Creation”, and most recently on composer Randy Hathaway’s “Classical Guitar In America” which has received rave reviews and international radio airplay. Jessica also plays the French horn and is a member of the Rain City Symphony in Seattle.  www.fretgirl.com

James Reid

James Reid

Over the past forty years James Reid has performed hundreds of times throughout the United States and Canada appearing in concerts for guitar societies, colleges and universities, and for arts councils. He has been a featured artist at numerous festivals including the Sun Waves Guitar Festival in Miami, the Portland Guitar Festival, Guitar New Orleans, The Guitar and Lute Institute, The Elkhorn Festival, and the Fairbanks Summer Music Festival.  In addition, his music has been aired on many public radio and television broadcasts in the west. Mr. Reid is also the founder of the Northwest Guitar Festival and the director of the guitar program at the University of Idaho.

Mr. Reid has released eight solo recordings that have been reviewed favorably both here and abroad. He has commissioned works by Bryan Johanson, Andrew York, Maximo Diego Pujol, and Gwyneth Walker and he regularly features recent compositions in his recital programs. In addition, he performs classics of the guitar repertoire by composers such as Mertz, Giuliani, Bach, and Sor. Mr. Reid has three times given presentations at international guitar festivals; on the music of Abel Carlevaro, on the music of Maximo Diego Pujol, and on the music of Bryan Johanson. In 1998, he was the recipient of a grant from the University of Idaho Research Council to record the music of the 19th century virtuoso-composer Johann Kaspar Mertz. In September of 1999 his recording, Sounds of the Bard, was featured on National Public Radio’s Performance Today program.  More recently, Mr. Reid has released, Guitarra Americana, which features the premiere recording of Mr. Reid’s composition Homages as well as works by Abel Carlevaro, and Gwyneth Walker.

Aside from his activities as a performer and teacher Mr. Reid served for eight years as the Review Editor for Recordings for Soundboard, the quarterly publication of the Guitar Foundation of America. He has also served as a judge for numerous state, regional, national, and international competitions.

Sebastian Robles

Sebastian Robles
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