All three guitarists share classical training, yet each holds a distinctive approach to composition and performance, having led vividly different forays into world, jazz, and modern classical music. This diversity of talent will be on display on November 1st when the trio will play the classical, baritone, 12- string and electric guitars.

Slava Grigoryan is well known as the pre-eminent Australian classical guitarist of his generation; Wolfgang Muthspiel is one of Austria’s most internationally acclaimed jazz guitarists and has been a significant figure on the transatlantic jazz scene for two decades. Both Grigoryan and Muthspiel share one musical hero: the legendary Ralph Towner.

Towner is a celebrated acoustic guitarist and a truly inspirational innovator on the modern musical landscape with a career spanning more than 30 years.

All three guitarists share a strong sense of structure, lyrical improvisation and an ability to harness instrumental technique to graceful musical ends.

‘Having performed in concert halls throughout the world, it's an absolute joy to be returning to City Recital Hall, where the acoustics are quite incredible. Audiences will hear the compositional and performance artistry of two of the most inspirational musicians with whom I have ever worked. Collaborating with Ralph and Wolfgang is definitely one of the highlights of my career.’ Slava Grigoryan

With world-class instrumentation and music destined to transport listeners to another world, this unique presentation of guitar mastery is not to be missed.

Slava Grigoryan was born in 1976 in Kazakhstan before moving to Australia in 1981. Raised in Melbourne he began studying the guitar at the age of seven and was playing professionally at the age of 12; he made his debut in Sydney at 14.Early success at the Tokyo International Classical Guitar Competition established his reputation and led to recordings on Sony (and, later, ABC). He has appeared with leading orchestras including the London Philharmonic, the BBC Concert Orchestra, Melbourne and Sydney Symphony Orchestras, the Northern Sinfonia, the Israel Symphony Orchestra, the Dresden Radio Orchestra and more. Slava appears often with his guitarist brother, Leonard and together they are members of the Australian guitar quartet, Saffire.

“Slava Grigoryan is a guitar player of uncommon originality and authority. Musicality, expressivity and daring … a singular talent.” The New York Times

Wolfgang Muthspiel was born in Austria in 1965 and took up the guitar at 15. At the Academy of Music and Performing Arts in Graz he studied both classical and jazz guitar, winning national classical music competitions and the International Guitar Competition (Mettman, Germany).

In 1986 he emigrated to the US to study at the New England Conservatory. At The Berklee School of Music he met Gary Burton who invited him to join his quintet. While based in New York from 1995 to 2002, he participated in a great variety of musical projects with artists including Rebekka Bakken, Trilok Gurtu, Youssou N’Dour, Gary Peacock, Dave Liebman and many others. In addition to his jazz projects, Muthspiel writes for contemporary classical ensembles and has received commissions from the Ensemble for New Music Zurich, Kangforum Wien, The Austrian Ministry of Arts and more.

“Muthspiel’s tricky compositions have an unstoppable groove … These tunes go places … and each is more interesting than the last.” Limelight Magazine

Ralph Towner was born in Washington in 1940. He began his jazz career as a Bill Evans inspired pianist, then travelled to Vienna to study classical guitar with Karl Scheit. In New York City in the late 1960s, Towner freelanced on piano and guitar, collaborating with musicians from Freddie Hubbard to Tim Hardin. He co-founded the band Oregon in 1970 with Collin Walcott, Glenn Moore and Paul McCandless. His recordings for ECM have included solo albums, duo projects (with John Abercrombie, Gary Peacock, Gary Burton and Paolo Fresu) and bands under his direction (including Solstice). He has also contributed to albums by Keith Jarrett, Jan Garbarek, Kenny Wheeler and Egberto Gismonti, and guested with Azimuth.

As an instrumentalist Towner has shaped distinct languages for his classical and 12-string guitars. As a composer he remains a unique force, combining baroque counterpoint, rhythms and melodies inspired by Brazilian music and jazz tradition, and a personal approach to harmony and development.

“Towner is one of the few players who can balance a flawless technique with a feeling and spirit that touches the listener on many levels.” Crusader News.

Saturday 1 November 2014, 7.30pm - City Recital Hall

Tickets*: Adult $52, Members $40, Concessions available (*additional fees may apply).

Bookings: 02 8256 2222,