I hope you will be able to join us at this year’s Boston GuitarFest, which will take place from June 20-24, 2012  at New England Conservatory and Northeastern University, along the Avenue of the Arts here in Boston. As in past years, we will offer an extraordinary series of concerts, masterclasses, lessons and other activities oriented around the guitar yet set within an interdisciplinary context.

As the media is fond of reminding us, we are in the midst of multiple international economic crises. In times as uncertain as these, we yearn for the wisdom of the greats. Surely in all the history of music there is no greater figure than Johann Sebastian Bach. He remains a beacon of excellence, a lighthouse of hope even when the world looks very dark. Bach never goes out of fashion, yet this year seemed a particularly appropriate time to pay homage to his legacy, and so the theme for GuitarFest 2012 is Back to Bach. Once again the great Oscar Ghiglia, artist par excellence and mentor and inspiration to so many (including myself), will be our featured guest artist.

I am so proud of all of past festivals, featuring incredible guitarists from all over the world as well as performers from outside the family of plucked strings. We have also been  enriched by guest lecturers from related fields such as history, art, politics, arts administration, career development, and musicology.

GuitarFest participants at all levels of guitar playing have the chance to work with some of the world’s finest classical guitar teachers, participate in our international guitar competitions, and this year, for the first time, attend the Boston GuitarFest Young Guitarists Workshop especially for children and young people. We also offer a competition for composers for guitar.

On top of its emphasis on excellence, Boston GuitarFest aims to be a festival of the people, by the people, and for the people! We welcome not just your presence here but your ideas, your suggestions, and your input of any sort. Let us hear from you! This is your festival too!

Please join with us this year as we make guitar history in Boston!

With affection,
Eliot Fisk
Artistic Director, Boston GuitarFest


Welcome from the State Offices:

Music brings people together and I am so proud we hold this festival here in the Bay State.

—Deval L. Patrick
Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

GuitarFest has become a wonderful summer tradition in Boston. Audiences come to learn more about different cultural traditions and to enjoy the extraordinary musical performances.

—Edward M. Kennedy
U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

Boston GuitarFest is a perfect example of music’s ability to traverse geographic, cultural and ethnic boundaries and as a confirmed amateur guitarist I know it will also be a lot of fun. I encourage musicians and everyone who appreciates their work to become involved in this important cultural celebration and I thank NEC and Eliot for making Boston GuitarFest a reality.

—John Kerry
U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

I welcome Boston GuitarFest as it continues to showcase the cultural advantages of the City of Boston, and to provide us all with the opportunity to hear wonderful music played at its best.

—Barney Frank
U.S. Representative from Massachusetts

To my friends at Boston GuitarFest – Good luck with the festival. Thanks for unifying people through music!

—Scott Brown
U.S. Senator from Massachusetts