Archive for the ‘Convention 2012’ Category

A continuation at all the faces behind the vendor tables at the 2012 GFA Convention.


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The last day of the convention! It’s always a flood of emotions – the anticipation of seeing who wins the International Concert Artist Competition, the sadness of saying goodbye to old and new friends, and the inspiration from a week filled with guitar, guitar, and more guitar.

Sunday began with a concert given by the guitar orchestra. It is quite a feat to perform a concert with the few rehearsals that are slated during convention week, and conductor Julian Gray did a fine job of preparing the group. This year’s repertoire included Albeniz’s Bajo la Palmera and two movements from Dancas Populares Brasileiras by Celso Machado.

The performance by the orchestra was followed by a truly unique setting of the Mozart opera Bastien & Bastienne for three guitars (Christopher Teves, Marco Sartor, and Christopher Guay) and singers. The orchestral score was arranged for guitar by Timothy Walker.

Volunteers like these have made this convention run all week long!

The future editor of Soundboard, Kim Perlak, with GFA Tour Director Lynn McGrath and Zoey Johnstone.

Competition directors and duo partners Risa Carlson (IYC) and Martha Masters (ICAC).

Getting ready for the evening’s Hall of Fame awards backstage. We were honored to have the legendary Christopher Parkening and his lovely family join us in Charleston. As a surprise, his recording producer and close friend Dave Thomas also flew in for the occasion.

Brian Head, GFA Artistic Director, introduces the Hall of Fame awards.

Brian Jeffrey accepts his Artistic Achievement Award via video from his home in London.

Jack Sanders accepts a Distinguished Service Award on behalf of his wife, Carol Sanders.

Jeff Cogan speaks in honor of luthier Daniel Friederich, the recipient of the Industry Leadership Award.

Another Artistic Achievement Award is given posthumously to Andres Segovia. Christopher Parkening speaks in his honor, recounting funny stories of the maestro and describing all the things that made Segovia great.

Parkening was also the recipient of an Artistic Achievement Award, and took the opportunity to share some important news with the GFA community. As a slideshow of Parkening’s many accomplishments flashed on the screen, one could not help but think of all the ways he shaped the landscape of American classical guitar during his performance career.

And of course, we can’t forget about our competition winners, who all played incredibly in the finals round. They waited patiently for all the speeches to be over so they could hear the results, which are posted here.

And so ends another convention. We can’t wait to see you next year in Louisville, KY!

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What an amazing finals round we heard last night! The winners of our 2012 International Concert Artist Competition are:

Rovshan Mamedkuliev (Russia) – 1st Prize
Celil Kaya (Turkey) – 2nd Prize
Silviu Ciulei (Romania/USA) – 3rd Prize
Ivan Sanchez Flores (Mexico) – 4th Prize

Below, our four finalists with ICAC director Martha Masters.

Rovshan Mamedkuliev will begin his tour in 2013-2014.

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Our IYC Competitors played their finals round this morning. Results were announced at the beginning of the 4pm concert in Sottile Theater.

Senior Division
Huaicong Mu (China) – 1st Prize
Shon Stelman (Israel/US) – 2nd Prize
Noam Kanter (Netherlands) – 3rd Prize
Tobias James (US) – 4th Prize

Below, Risa Carlson, IYC Director, with Senior Division finalists.

Junior Division
Kevin Loh (Singapore)- 1st Prize
Woo Tak Kim (S. Korea) – 2nd Prize
Ashwin Krishna (US) – 3rd Prize
James Graham (Canada) – 4th Prize

Below, Risa Carlson with Junior Division finalists.

Here are the winners from both divisions with the judges. Congratulations to all!


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Congratulations to the finalists of the 2012 GFA International Youth Competition (in performance order):

Junior Division

Ashwin Krishna (US)

Woo Tak Kim (South Korea)

Kevin Loh (Singapore)

James Graham (Canada)

Senior Division

Shon Stelman (Israel/US)

Huaicong Mu (China)

Tobias James (US)

Noam Kanter (Netherlands)

The IYC finals will be held Sunday, July 1, 2012 at 10am in Simons Recital Hall.

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Every GFA Convention is a great time to reunite with old and new friends. From left to right: Chad Ibison, Ricky Escobar, Tracy Anne Smith, and Scott Borg.

Sometimes socializing can be a little more structured too. Gaelle Solal leads youth in some icebreakers at the GFA Youth Social.

The Chen-Piao Guitar Quartet hails from Beijing and impresses the 4pm crowd with a diverse program.

Julian Gray rehearses the Guitar Orchestra in preparation for their Sunday morning concert.

Friday evening’s concert is none other than the amazing Assad Brothers. Sergio and Odair give an impeccable performance of Brazilian music to a packed audience in Sottile Theater. They are given a standing ovation and play the world’s fastest version of Vals Venezolano No. 4 (Natalia) by Antonio Lauro as an encore.

And the news that everyone has been waiting for is announced during intermission – our 2012 ICAC finalists!

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After hearing many hours of incredible playing from the ICAC Semifinalists, judges Giampaolo Bandini, Cesare Chiacchiaretta, Roland Dyens, Marko Feri, Dale Kavanagh, Eleftheria Kotzia, and Juan Carlos Laguna have selected the finalists for this year’s competition.

From left to right: Celil Kaya (Turkey), Silviu Ciulei (Romania/USA), Rovshan Mamedkuliev (Russia), Ivan Sanchez Flores (Mexico)

The ICAC finals will be on Sunday, July 1, 2012 in Sottile Theater at 6:30.

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