Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center Hosts Annual International Guitar Night

Livermore, California (EastBayDaily) — LVPAC welcomes back the return of International Guitar Night to the Bankhead Theater on Wednesday, Jan. 22.

The annual event highlights the remarkable range of talent and musical diversity in the acoustic guitar world as four internationally-acclaimed guitarists perform both individually and in collaboration during a single night of outstanding music. Credited as “one of the most important showcases for the contemporary guitar” by The San Francisco Chronicle, International Guitar Night (IGN) is a long-standing Bay Area tradition known for its friendly and informal ambiance, as well as its exceptional guitar performances. This is the third year IGN has appeared at the Bankhead Theater during its annual tour across the United States and Canada. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. performance range from $25 to $45 for adults and $15 for students.

While it has grown in stature to become one of the most important acoustic guitar showcases in the world since it was started almost 20 years ago, International Guitar Night has retained an informal ambiance. Sponsored by Acoustic Guitar Magazine, IGN is the only production of its kind to have grassroots origins. It was originally founded as a series of small concerts featuring local acoustic guitar masters in a small Bay Area club, but quickly grew and eventually went on tour across North America. Its success is attributed largely to founder and guitarist Brian Gore’s ability to elicit a warm spirit of collaboration between diverse guitar virtuosos who typically tour solo and often hail from different musical genres. The camaraderie on stage, described by one guitarist as a wonderful opportunity for a cultural exchange between peers, creates a rich musical experience for audiences as well.

Gore has been acclaimed as a guitar poet, and one of the most interesting and influential guitar stylists today with a unique blend of classical and percussive techniques and a strikingly beautiful tone. Gore’s three guests for IGN 2014 are acclaimed for their creative and sometimes unusual collaborations with artists of different genres, making them the ideal performers for an event of this kind. Italian steel string guitarist Pino Forastiere has brought his classical guitar background to collaborate on projects from jazz and rock, to electronic and pop. He is revered for his unique mix of melody, improvisation and hand percussion. Mike Dawes from England is hailed as one of the world’s finest young fingerstyle guitarists. Since his debut single in 2012, he has toured every continent, his energy and charisma combining with a virtuoso style acclaimed for its subtle nuances. Considered one of Argentina’s most important guitarists, Quique Sinesi plays the seven-string Spanish guitar, piccolo guitar and charango, combining elements of tango and folklore with jazz, classical and world rhythms into his dynamic music.

Now in its seventh season at the Bankhead Theater, LVPAC Presents offers audiences the opportunity to experience a range of acclaimed performers in music, dance and other performing arts. Appearances by such guitar greats as Larry Carlton, Eric Johnson, Leo Kottke, Robert Cray and others have attracted audiences of all ages from throughout the Tri-Valley area and beyond, helping to establish Livermore as a popular destination for guitar enthusiasts and music lovers. The annual LVPAC Guitar Fest LIVE! and the concurrently held LVPAC Acoustic Guitar Competition bring award-winning performances, free guitar clinics, outdoor concerts, and an equipment showcase to the downtown area each September.

Expanding on the breadth of acoustic guitar music at the Bankhead Theater, next month Grammy Award-winning guitarist Sharon Ibsin unites her classical technique and stylish approach to jazz in “Guitar Passions,” an evening of Latin music on Wednesday, Feb. 26. Ibsin and jazz master Stanley Jordan will join with the Brazilian style of Romero Lubambo in an eclectic and contemporary mix of the musical influences of Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Colombia and Spain. Tickets for International Guitar Night in January, “Guitar Passions” in February, or any other upcoming event in the 2013-2014 LVPAC Presents season are available now at the Bankhead Theater ticket office.

About the company:

The Bankhead Theater, located at 2400 First Street in Downtown Livermore, is home to the LVPAC Presents series as well as performances by resident companies and touring performing arts groups. Rotating art exhibitions are also presented in the lobby and Founder’s Room throughout the year. The ticket office is open Tuesday through Friday from noon to 6 p.m. and Saturdays from 3 to 6 p.m. On performance days, the ticket office is open from two hours before to 30 minutes after the scheduled start of each show. To purchase tickets, call 925-373-6800 or visit


Nancy Mueller