International Guitar Night Headed for Kalispell’s Wachholz College Center in February

The event will feature accomplished guitarists originally from Italy, Brazil, Australia and Vietnam

By Mike Kordenbrock
Australian guitarist Minnie Marks. Courtesy photo

Guitarists from Italy, Vietnam, Brazil and Australia will be convening at Flathead Valley Community College this February for a Wachholz College Center performance of the show International Guitar Night.  

Italian guitarist Luca Stricagnoli. Courtesy photo

Tickets are on sale for the event, which will showcase a range of guitar styles, including classical, modern, Brazilian and blues in what the college center described in a press release as “a mind bending instrumental guitar extravaganza.” International Guitar Night, which is now in its 24th edition, has its origins in Northern California in the late 90s.

“We are thrilled to bring International Guitar Night back to the Wachholz College Center for what promises to be an extraordinary evening of music,” Matt Laughlin, director of the Wachholz College Center, said in the press release. “Anticipation is high as we prepare to immerse our audience in a night of extraordinary performances that showcase the unparalleled beauty and diversity of the guitar’s global language.”

Four artists — Luca Stricagnoli, Thu Le, Marco Pereira and Minnie Marks — will share the stage for the Feb. 18 show in Kalispell.

Stricagnoli is an Italian guitarist currently based in Nashville who is known to play rock and movie soundtrack classics, as well as originals, on custom double- and triple-neck guitars, and who can simultaneously play multiple guitars in a single song.

Le, a Vietnamese guitarist based out of Bahrain, was 7 when she became the youngest student admitted to the National Conservatory of Music in Hanoi, according to her website biography. Her musical repertoire includes songs inspired by her Vietnamese roots, as well as pieces from classic and contemporary composers.

Vietnamese guitarist Thu Le. Courtesy photo

Pereira is an award-winning Brazilian guitarist who has collaborated with other Brazilian musicians including the pop singer Gal Costa, the singer-songwriter Milton Nascimento, and the late Tob Jobim, a composer and musician who is considered the founding father of bossa nova music. Promotional materials for the International Guitar Night describe him as a guitarist whose “performances are marked by their emotional depth and technical brilliance” and whose compositions “are considered modern masterpieces for classical guitar.”

Rounding out the lineup is Marks, an Australian guitarist and singer, and the winner of the 2011 Bluesfest Busking Competition in New South Wales. Marks plays guitar across genres including blues, rock and roll, and roots music, and accompanies herself on drums with a foot drum kit.

International Guitar Night also came to FVCC last February for an evening featuring the music of Finnish guitarist Olli Soikkeli, Australian guitarist Stephanie Jones, Spanish guitarist Jesus Guerrero, Canadian guitarist Jocelyn Gould and Israeli guitarist Itamar Erez.

Brazilian guitarist Marco Pereira. Courtesy photo

There are several other upcoming musical performances scheduled for the college center through February. Later this month, country singer-songwriter and former “The Voice” contestant RaeLynn will play a show on Jan. 26.

On Feb. 7, the college center will host The Queen’s Cartoonists, a live band that plays the soundtrack for film projections of animation and cartoon classics.

Local violinist Wai Mizutani is scheduled to play at the college center on Feb. 9 for a show featuring Natilee Radosevich on piano and Micah Hunter performing opera arias.

On Feb. 17, the Glacier Symphony Orchestra will host pianist Terrance Wilson for a performance celebrating the 100th anniversary of George Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue.”

Country music performers the Eli Young Band will play at the center on Feb. 21, and closing out the month is jazz saxophonist Joshua Redman for a Feb. 28 show.  

For more information go to www.wachholzcollegecenter.org.