Schedule / Past Festivals

The Ruts of Performance

The Ruts of Performance: Guitarists Mirah Yom Tov Zeitlyn, Erika Anderson (EMA) and Ava Mendoza share and explain their methods of moving past creative walls. Moderated by Fabi Reyna, founder and editor-in-chief of She Shreds Magazine.



It’s a first in Festival history: A marathon devoted entirely to... ragas! The Winter Garden at Brookfield Place will host this FREE-ADMISSION all-day event. In Hindustani classical music, melodies and modalities are thought to reach full potency at a particular hour, in tune with the Earth on its axis.

Sharon Isbin and her Juilliard protégés

Building on last year’s sold-out event, the New York Guitar Festival and WNYC’s New Sounds present a four-week series that features a diverse cast of guitar slingers performing newly commissioned works and special collaborations.

Saul Koll in Conversation with Ed Keller

Renowned luthier Saul Koll will present a keynote talk about his guitars and design process. Koll is known both for his ‘Glide’ electric guitars, which hybridize many attributes of classic instruments, and his innovative custom instruments, the RE 7 and 8 String ergonomic archtop jazz guitars, played by artists such as David Torn, Elliot Sharp, Bill Frisell, and Lee Ranaldo.

New Ergonomics in Guitar Design; with Saul Koll, Ola Strandberg,Harvey Valdes, Joe Ravo, Jeff Doctorow and Ed Keller

In recent decades an increasing number of luthiers have addressed the challenges surrounding ergonomic guitar design. Shape, weight and playability are part of this; the greater availability of new materials and manufacturing processes have played a substantial role also as builders use carbon fiber, synthetic materials, laminates and aerospace glues, and CNC milling machines for fabrication.

Creation: A panel discussion on trends in composition,  commissioning,  performing and publishing new music for classical guitar. Featuring Robert Cuckson,  Marco Cappelli and Andrew McKenna Lee. Moderated by Michael Newman and Laura Oltman, of the Newman Oltman Duo.

A Conversation with Kid Millions, Don Bikoff + Jeff Conklin

A discussion on American Primitive presented by Tompkins Square, featuring Don Bikoff, Jeff Conklin and and moderated by Kid MillionsThe Tompkins Square Label has released many essential recordings by first-gen cosmic guitar players like Harry Taussig, Michael Chapman, Peter Walker and Max Ochs, as well as young gun slingers in t

Contemporary Improvisation and The Electric Guitar

Liberty Ellman, Grey McMurray and Gyan Riley in conversation with Alternative Guitar Summit founder/curator Joel Harrison. A loose, wide-ranging discussion on the incredible breadth of guitar styles and approaches that have proliferated in new music and jazz in the 21st century. 

Hosted by the Center for Transformative Media at The New School, with Mannes College of Music.

Nigel North: The French Lute of the 17th-century

A presentation by Nigel North on the instrument, tuning, tablatures, and music that a lutenist lived with 350 years ago. 

Hosted by the Center for Transformative Media at The New School, with Mannes College of Music.

About Nigel North:

Derek Gripper in conversation with Banning Eyre

The South African guitarist/composer Derek Gripper in conversation with author, guitarist, broadcaster Banning Eyre.  Eyre has spent years exploring the guitar styles of Africa, and is the author of four books, including In Griot Time: An American Guitarist in Mali.