Guitarist Sharon Isbin, soloist with the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra this weekend, will visit informally with UALR students and faculty at 12:15 p.m. Friday at the Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall in UALR’s Fine Arts Building.
Acclaimed for her extraordinary lyricism, technique and versatility, Isbin has been hailed as, “the pre-eminent guitarist of our time.” The multiple Grammy Award winner is also the winner of Guitar Player magazine’s “Best Classical Guitarist” award, the Madrid Queen Sofia and Toronto Competitions, and was the first guitarist ever to win the Munich Competition.
She has given sold-out performances throughout the world in the greatest halls including New York’s Carnegie and Avery Fisher Halls, Boston’s Symphony Hall, Washington D.C.’s Kennedy Center, London’s Barbican and Wigmore Halls, Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, Paris’ Châtelet, Vienna’s Musikverein, Munich’s Herkulessaal, Madrid’s Teatro Real, and many others.
She has served as Artistic Director/Soloist of festivals she created for Carnegie Hall and the Ordway Music Theatre in St. Paul, her own series at New York’s 92nd Street YMCA, and the acclaimed national radio series Guitarjam. She is a frequent guest on national radio programs including “All Things Considered” and Garrison Keillor’s “A Prairie Home Companion.”
Isbin’s catalogue of over 25 recordings — from baroque, Spanish/Latin, and 20th century to crossover and jazz-fusion — reflects remarkable versatility. Recently signed to Sony Masterworks as an exclusive recording artist, her 2010 Grammy Award winning CD, “Journey to the New World” includes guests Joan Baez in songs, and Mark O’Connor in the world premiere of his folk-inspired suite for violin and guitar.
Isbin performs 60 to 100 concerts a season, and recent highlights have included tours with the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the Tonkünstler Orchestra throughout Austria including Vienna’s Musikverein, recitals in New York’s 92nd St. Y and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; a week of concerto and recital performances presented by the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris, and as soloist with the Minnesota Orchestra, Filarmonica Toscanini in Milan, and the 2009 MIDEM Classical Awards in Cannes.
Ms. Isbin has appeared as soloist with over 160 orchestras, including in the United States the New York Philharmonic, National Symphony, Baltimore, Detroit, Nashville, Houston, Dallas, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, St. Louis, New Jersey, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Phoenix, Utah, Memphis and Honolulu Symphonies, the Rochester, Brooklyn and Buffalo Philharmonics, as well as the St. Paul, New York and Los Angeles Chamber Orchestras.