LMU | LA - Loyola Marymount University


Guitar Concert & Masterclass Series
2013-2014 Season

Tickets available through the Central Ticket Agency at (310) 338-5466.
More Information: (310) 338-5158 


Benjamin Verdery

Saturday, September 28                                  
8:00 p.m. (Concert)

Sunday, September 29
10:00 a.m. (Masterclass)

Murphy Recital Hall

$25 general admission, $15 students with ID, Masterclass free to auditors 


Artistic director of 92nd Street Y’s Art of the Guitar series since 2006, Benjamin Verdery is hailed for his innovative and eclectic musical career. Since 1980 he has performed worldwide in theaters and at festivals, including Theatre Carré in Amsterdam, the International Guitar Festival at Havana, Wigmore Hall in London, and the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and Metropolitan Opera in New York. His tours regularly take him throughout the US, Canada, Europe and Asia. He has recorded and performed with such diverse artists as Andy Summers, Frederic Hand, William Coulter, Leo Kottke, Anthony Newman, Jessye Norman, PacoPeña, Hermann Prey and John Williams.

Benjamin Verdery

Ben Verdery has released more than 15 albums, his most recent being Happy
with William Coulter; and Branches, featuring works of Bach, Strauss, Jimi Hendrix, Mozart and the traditional Amazing Grace, both for Mushkatweek. His CD, Start Now, also for Mushkatweek, won the 2005 Classical Recording Foundation Award, while other recordings of note include Some Towns & Cities and his collaborations with John Williams (John Williams Plays Vivaldi) and Andy Summers (First you Build A Cloud).

Many of the leading composers of our time have created music for Ben, including Ezra Laderman, Martin Bresnick, John Anthony Lennon, Anthony Newman, Roberto Sierra, Van Stiefel and Jack Vees. Of particular note was the commission by the Yale University Music

Library of a work by Ingram Marshall for classical and electric guitars. Ben Verdery and Andy Summers premiered the work, Dark Florescence, at Carnegie Hall with the American Composers Orchestra. Last December, the two guitarists appeared
at the annual Amsterdam Electric Guitar Heaven.

Benjamin Verdery is also a prolific published composer in his own right with many of his compositions having been performed, recorded and published over the years. In 2012, he was commissioned to compose two works: Penzacola Belongs To All, commissioned by the Pensacola Guitar Orchestra in celebration of their 30th Anniversary (premiered in Pensacola October 2012) and Stand in Your Own Light for guitar and koto, commissioned by the Kyo‐Shin‐An Arts with funding from the New York State Council for the Arts (premiered in New York City November 2012).

In 2010, The Assad Duo premiered Ben's work, What He Said. Commissioned by the 92 St Y, the work is dedicated to the late luthier Thomas Humphrey. Other recent works have included Now and Ever (for David Russell,Telarc), Peace, Love and Guitars (for John Williams and John Etheridge, SONY Classical), Capitola (John Williams, SONY Classical) and Give (for eight guitars). This last was composed specifically for Thomas Offermann and the guitar ensemble of the Hochschule for Music and Theatre (Rostock, Germany) and dedicated to the memory of U.S. Senator Edward Kennedy. Ben’s Scenes from Ellis Island, for guitar orchestra, has been extensively broadcast and performed at festivals and universities in the United States, Canada, New Zealand and Europe, and the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet included it on their CD, Air and Ground (Sony Classical).

Doberman‐Yppan (Canada) is currently publishing his solo and duo works for guitar, and Workshop Arts (distributed by Alfred Music) has published the solo pieces from Some Towns & Cities as well as instructional books and video. Many other compositions are available at his web site.

In addition to his performances, tours and recording, since 1985, Benjamin Verdery has been chair of the guitar department at the Yale University School of Music and artistic director of the biannual Yale Guitar Extravaganza. He was appointed an honorary board member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas in 2007. Each summer Ben holds his Annual International Master Class on the Island of Maui (Hawaii).




Xavier Díaz-Latorre  

Saturday, February 22                                           
8:00 p.m. (Concert)

Murphy Recital Hall                           

$25 general admission, $15 students with ID


Xavier Diaz-Latorre Xavier Díaz-Latorre was born in Barcelona, Spain in 1968.

He studied at advanced level in Basle with Oscar Ghiglia at the Musikakademie and Hopkinson Smith at the Schola Cantorum. He has given concerts at major venues around the world, including the Carnegie Hall (New York), Covent Garden (London), the Palau de la Música Catalana (Barcelona), the Teatro Real (Madrid), the Teatro Colón (Buenos Aires), the Wiener Philarmonie (Vienna) and the Konzerthaus (Berlin).

Díaz-Latorre performs regularly with world-renowned ensembles such as Hesperion XXI, La Capella Reial de Catalunya and Le Concert des Nations. He has also performed with Al Ayre Español, the Orquesta Nacional de España, Concerto Vocale, the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, Concerto Köln and others.

Laberintos Ingeniosos is his own vocal-instrumental ensemble, which he has taken to a number of different countries throughout the world. Xavier Díaz-Latorre has made more than 30 recordings for international CD labels. He teaches early plucked instruments, chamber music and bass continuo at the ESMUC (Escola Superior de Música de Catalunya), and has been invited to teach in the USA, Korea, Japan and several European countries.




The 10th Annual LMU Guitar Festival
(March 21-23)


Tickets available through the Central Ticket Agency at (310) 338-5466. 
All concerts will be held in Murphy Recital Hall.

Vendor’s and Luthier’s Fair all weekend long

Concert Tickets     
$25 general admission, $15 students with ID

Festival Passes     
$65 general admission, $45 students with ID

Advance Tickets     (310) 338-5466
More Information   (310) 338-5158







Csaki Escobar Guitar Duo 

Friday, March 21                                        
8:00 p.m. (Concert)

Murphy Recital Hall 


Lauded for their dynamic stage presence and bravura, guitarists Andras Csaki and Ricardo Escobar are an exuberant ensemble who captivate audiences world wide.  The duo met in Los Angeles as graduate students at the University of Southern California where they were students of Pepe Romero, William Kanengiser, and Scott Tennant.  From their first rehearsal, the duo played with an uncommon synchronicity of style, touch, and energy.  Their performances as duo, soloist, and soloist with orchestra have taken them to concert stages in Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Chile, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Greece, Poland, Germany, Japan, Mexico, Norwegen, Romania, Russia, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, Spain, Venezuela and the United States.   

Dedicated to celebrating the legacy of art music, the duo are passionate educators.  Andras holds the position of guitar profesor at the Béla Bartók Conservatory of Music, and assistant professor at Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music in Budapest, Hungary, while Ricky is a teaching assistant at the University of Southern California.





Young Artists Showcase Concert

Saturday, March 22                                                           
11:00 a.m.


Ensemble Coaching

Saturday, March 22                                                           
2:00 p.m.



Mak Grgic

Saturday, March 22                                             
2:00 p.m. & 3:30 p.m. (Concert)

Murphy Recital Hall 

Mak has been invited to venues worldwide, including the Sandpoint Festival with the Spokane Symphony, the Allegro Guitar Series in Texas, the National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C., the Newman Center for the Performing Arts, Denver, in performance with the Assad Brothers and cello super-star Joshua Roman for Strings on Fire, Strathmore Hall in North Bethesda, MD, Pepperdine University as a guest of Christopher Parkening, Portland Classical Guitar, Guitar Festival Mikulov, Piran Music Nights and The Sounds of Six Strings, Cankarjev Dom, Slovenia. As a new Young Artist in Residence at Da Camera Society of Mount St. Mary’s College in Los Angeles, he will appear with JACK Quartet in the premiere of a new work by composer and member of the Philip Glass Ensemble, David Crowell, and in recitals with the young, brilliant cellist Jeremiah Campbell.

He has performed at the Grande Auditorium di Espinho, Espinho and Teatro di Fafe, Fafe Municipality in Portugal, Teatro Cervantes de Bejar, Salamanca, Castile-Leon in Spain, International Music Council of the European Broadcasting Union in an all instrument "New Talent" Competition in Bratislava, representing the Republic of Slovenia, and a performance with RTV Slovenia Symphony Orchestra and Maestro Ivo Lipanovic - Gallus Hall, Cankarjev Dom, Ljubljana, Slovenia, The Dallas Opera with Chamber Orchestra in performances of Peter Maxwell Davies' The Lighthouse, the Lancaster Festival in Ohio, where he performed Rodrigo's Fantasia para un Gentilhombre, conducted by Gary Sheldon, conductor of the Miami City Ballet. Other dates include performances with the renowned JACK Quartet where they premiered a new guitar quintet by the most distinguished of young Slovenian composers, Nina Senk, as well as the Croatian Chamber Philharmonic in Europe and at the "Musica a 4 Stelle" summer festival in Grado, Italy, the Guitar Festival at William Patterson University in New Jersey, St. Donat's Church in Zadar, Croatia, and the Atrium of the City Museum of Ljubljana, Slovenia. He has been reviewed and interviewed around the world by magazines, newspapers and radio stations such as KPBX in Spokane, Washington, UNIVOX and National Radio in Slovenia, National TV and Radio in Croatia, Thüringische Landeszeitung in Germany, Jutarnji List in Croatia, the popular family magazine Jana in Slovenia, Columbus Dispatch in Ohio, Classical Guitar Magazine in the UK and Il Messaggero and Chitarra Classica in Italy and The Washington Post.

He recently recorded music for the film Regrets of White Camellias staring Cybill Shepherd to be released in 2012.

Mak recently took first prize at the Guitar Competition "Luigi Mozzani" in Italy and the Pacific Guitar Festival and Competition 2011 in California, and has been honored with highest prizes at: the Andres Segovia International Competition for young guitarists in Velbert, Germany, the Forum Gitarre Wien International Competition in Vienna, Austria, the International Guitar Competition in Arrenzano, Italy, the Anna Amalia Competition for young guitarists in Weimar, Germany, the International Guitarart Festival and Competition in Belgrade, Serbia and the European Classical Guitar Competition "Enrico Mercatali" in Italy.

Born in 1987 in Ljubljana, Slovenia, Mak follows in a distinguished line of some of today's finest young guitarists emerging from the Croatian school of guitar. In Zagreb he studied with the revered Ante Cagalj at the Elly Basic Conservatory of Music and obtained his Bachelor's Degree with Alvaro Pierri at the Universitaet fuer Musik und darstellende Kunst in Vienna, Austria. At the moment he is pursuing a Master's Degree at the USC Thornton School of Music as a student of William Kanengiser of the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet. He is also a newly appointed TA at USC at the Thornton School of Music.





Grisha Goryachev                                                            

Saturday, March 22                                             
8:00 p.m. (Concert)

Murphy Recital Hall                   


‌‌Grisha Goryachev A native of St. Petersburg, Russia, Grisha Goryachev is renowned for his extraordinary musical sensitivity and technical virtuosity in both classical and flamenco styles. 

Grisha is one of very few guitarists in the world who is reviving the tradition of solo flamenco guitar in a concert setting that was practiced by legendary flamenco masters such as Ramón Montoya and Sabicas. Grisha strives to keep alive older flamenco masterpieces that now exist only on records, by performing them in concerts. Instead of merely copying, he creates his own interpretations of these masterpieces, using dynamics and tone colors usually associated with classical guitar. 

Grisha began playing guitar at the age of six, studying first with his father Dmitry, an acknowledged master teacher of the instrument. Leading an extensive career as a child prodigy at nine years old, Grisha performed regularly before large audiences in the most prestigious concert halls in the Soviet Union.  

Following a tour of Spain, Grisha was invited to play for flamenco legend Paco de Lucía, who soon after personally intervened in support of his application for an American visa, which was awarded in 1997 on the basis of “Extraordinary Ability”.  In May 2005 Grisha was awarded the prize for Best Performance of Spanish Music at the VI International Classical Guitar Competition "Julian Arcás" in Almería, Spain. 

Grisha received his Bachelor, Master and Doctor of Musical Arts (dissertation pending) degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, where he studied under famous guitar virtuoso Eliot Fisk. He was one of the 30 people in 2006 to become a fellow of the prestigious Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowship, recognizing him as exceptional in his chosen field. 

A firm believer in exposing the young generations to the beauty of classical and flamenco guitar, he likes to include Outreach performances and workshops at schools as part of his concert tours. 

Grisha’s YouTube videos have collected over two million views and many notable comments. Grisha recorded two CDs: “Alma Flamenca” and “Homenaje a Sabicas”. 





Andrew York

Sunday, March 23
10:00 a.m. - 1 p.m. (Masterclass)

Murphy Recital Hall



Les Frères Méduses

Sunday, March 23                                      
2:00 p.m. (Concert)

Murphy Recital Hall            


The name Les Frères Méduses captures the spirit of our collaboration more than anything.  When we stumbled on the name “Jellyfish Brothers”  (Ben saw a Jellyfish exposition at an aquarium in Akron, OH, and thought I looked like one) we couldn’t let it go.

The name conjured up a vivid sense of water, movement, surrealism, humor.  On one side, it suggested an atmosphere similar to experimental stage entertainment: the name could refer to a Chicago comedy-improv group, a circus act or some other slap-stick off-the-wall troup.  Under different context, the name has a very serious connotation.  The word ”Meduses” has significant, strong symbolic meaning: la bateau de la Medusa by Théodore Géricault,  the famous Medusa known in greek mythology – symbols of eminent danger and petrifying horror. The French adjective “Médusé” refers to someone who has been shocked or transformed by statement or scene – positively transfixed by a situation, vision or performance.  The name gave us the range and flexibility to explore and take risks.

For the past four years, we’ve performed, improvised, arranged and composed as Les Freres Meduses”.  The repertoire ranges from classical music to folk/pop music.  The spirit of collaboration is always at the center as we continue to branch out to larger projects, experimental media, film music and interesting collaborations.

When finally announced the naming of the duo “les Frères Méduses” two years ago, we were in the process of arranging an important museum concert.  We found out afterwards that the museum had just hosted a beautiful Dale Chihuly exposition entitled “Jellyfish”.



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