BUFFALO, N.Y. – Eight top international guitarists representing eight nations have been chosen to participate in the fifth biennial JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition, set for June 6-9. The public is invited to meet these gifted artists and enjoy their performances, both in competition and at free “Guitar Days” community events (dates and locations to be announced at a later date).
- Petrit Ceku - Zagreb, Croatia (currently studying in U.S.)
- Andra's Csa'ki - Budapest, Hungary
- Mark Edwards - Baltimore, Maryland, USA
- Tariq Harb - Toronto, Ontario, Canada and Jordan (dual citizenship)
- Ekachai Jearakul - Ubonsatchathani, Thailand
- Celil Refik Kaya - Kadikoy, Istanbul (currently studying in U.S.)
- Nemanja Ostoich - Serbia (resides in U.S.)
- Sanel Redzic, Weimar, Germany
Semifinals will be held on Wednesday, June 6 and Thursday, June 7 at 7:30 p.m. at the WNED studios. They will air on WNED-TV and Classical 94.5 WNED and streamed online at wned.org. The finals will take place at Kleinhans Music Hall on Saturday, June 9, also at 7:30 p.m. That evening, the top three contestants perform with the BPO, conducted by JoAnn Falletta. Tickets are $12 per night for the semifinals and $39 - $72 for the finals. They can be purchased at bpo.org or by calling (716) 885-5000. Student and senior discounts available.
“The young musicians participating in this competition are outstanding talents,” said Falletta, who also is a classical guitarist. “I am very pleased to be able to bring their tremendous abilities to a greater audience and to be part of this incredible event which nurtures their growth and future careers.”
Acclaimed by The New York Times as “...one of the finest conductors of her generation,” Falletta is the Music Director of the BPO and the Virginia Symphony Orchestra, and artistic advisor to the Honolulu Symphony.
“We’re, once again, honored to be welcoming these extremely talented classical guitarists to showcase their talents,” said Donald K. Boswell, WNED president and CEO. “WNED is also thrilled to be able to bring this amazing musical and cultural spectacle into the homes and communities of Western New York and Southern Ontario. We hope it will expose viewers to the rich and strong arts culture that has been brought to this area.”
As a group, 2012’s top eight semifinalists have already distinguished themselves on the international classical music scene. They’ve won top prizes in competitions around the world and are alumni and/or students at some of the most renowned schools of music. The contestants vie for a prize package that includes cash, a return engagement with the BPO, an appearance with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra and Round Top Musical Festival in Texas, a concert guitar by Gabriel Hernandez Jimenez and a crystal trophy.
Audience and orchestra members will select the winners of the Audience Favorite Award and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra Musicians Choice Award, respectively, during the June 9 finals.
Buffalo-based Joanne Castellani and Michael Andriaccio, a well-known international chamber ensemble duo, are the Competition’s artistic directors. In addition to Castellani and Andriaccio, the live competitions will be judged by Eduardo Fernandez, classical guitarist active composer and researcher; Adam Holzman, guitarist, teacher, international performer and recording artist; Ricardo Iznaola, Chair of the Guitar and Harp Department and Director of the Conservatory Program at University at Denver's Lamont School of Music; Tony Morris, featured performer on “Classical Guitar Alive” radio program; Berta Rojas, classical guitar recording artist. Full judges bios can be found on fallettacompetition.org.
BPO Executive Director Daniel Hart said that having eminent music professionals and educators as judges “greatly enhances the world class status of this competition.”
The 2012 Falletta Competition is presented by BlueCross BlueShield of WNY; M&T Bank; Robert G. and Carol L. Morris; T.G. DeZastro, M.D. and D’Youville College. It is also sponsored, in part, by: Clover Management, Inc.; Fichte Endl and Elmer Eyecare; Niagara Lutheran Health System; Catholic Health System; Alesco Advisors; Magavern, Magavern and Grimm, LLP Attorneys; Edwards Appliance; Music Niagara; The Kaz Company; Eye Care and Vision Associates; Park Creek Senior Living Community; Ecology and Environment, Inc.; and Fox Run Orchard Park. Additional support is provided by the Adam’s Mark Hotel.
About the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra
About the JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition
Founded in 2004 and organized by WNED and the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra (BPO), the competition is one of the foremost musical events in the world and the first concerto competition for classical guitarists. It is named in honor of the BPO’s music director. For more information about the 2012 Falletta Competition, contact Christye Peterson, Managing Director, at (716) 866-9915, or visit fallettacompetition.org. Tickets are available by visiting bpo.org or calling the BPO Box Office at (716) 885-5000.
About WNED Buffalo-Toronto
Through WNED-TV, ThinkBright and Well/WORLD TV, Classical 94.5/WNED-FM and WBFO 88.7 FM /WNED-AM 970, the member-supported WNED Buffalo/Toronto provides high quality programming and services to local, regional and national audiences that enlighten, inspire, entertain and educate Western New York and Southern Ontario communities. Additional information about WNED can be found at wned.org.
Celebrating its 75th year, the Grammy® winning Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra is an internationally recognized symphony of the highest artistic caliber and an indispensable part of the Western New York community’s quality of life.