Biography

I consider Eliot Fisk as one of the most brilliant, intelligent and gifted young musical artists of our times, not only amongst guitarists but in all the general field of instrumentalists. His clear and flexible technique, his noble style of interpreting the beauty of the classic compositions as well as the colourful music of today, put him at the top line of our artistic world.

- Andrés Segovia

Eliot Fisk and Andrés Segovia

English

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Guitarist Eliot Fisk is known worldwide as a charismatic performer famed for his adventurous and virtuosic repertoire. He is also celebrated for his willingness to take art music into unusual venues (including schools, senior centers,logging camps and prisons). After 45 years before the public he remains as his mentor Andres Segovia once wrote, “at the top line of our artistic world.”

Called “the devil’s guitarist” by one critic (for his playing of Paganini) He has performed with orchestras such the Los Angeles Philharmonic and the Houston Symphony, performing Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez; the Orchestra of St. Lukes, performing and recording Vivaldi, The Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, premiering a new concerto by Daniel Bernard Roumain and The American Composers Orchestra conducted by Dennis Russell Davies premiering Robert Beaser’s Guitar Concerto. Eliot also premiered Luciano Berio’s Chemin V for guitar and chamber orchestra with the Orchester der Beethovenhalle conducted by the composer. The Chemin V like the Sequenza XI for solo guitar on which it is based was written for Mr. Fisk.

Eliot Fisk has participated in numerous cross over projects with colleagues such as flamenco great Paco Pena; jazz guitarists Joe pass and Bill Frisell, as well as ongoing collaborations with classical artists such as clarinetist Richard Stoltzman, Tenor Nicholas Phan, and cellist Yehuda Hanani and has recorded 2 CDs with his long time chamber music partner, flutist Paula Robison.

Eliot Fisk has performed at venues such as Stanford Lively Arts, Spivey Hall, Duke Performances, Newman Center for the Performing Arts, Alice Tully Hall, Zankel Hall, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and the 92nd Street Y in NYC, for the Da Camera of Houston, Da Camera of Los Angeles, Orange County Performing Arts Center, The Segovia Series in Chicago and the at the Frick Collection in New York both solo and with cellist Yehuda Hanani. He returns regularly to important guitar festivals such as those of Cordoba, Spain; Iserlohn, Bad Aibling, and Hersbrueck Germany, and this summer will make his debut at the Shanghai Festival in China along with his wife, virtuoso guitarist Zaira Meneses and daughter, 13 year old pianist Raquel Fisk.

Eliot Fisk has revolutionized the guitar repertoire with innumerable transcriptions (including works by Bach, Scarlatti, Haydn, Mozart, Paganini, Schubert and Albeniz) and through works dedicated to him by composers as varied as Luciano Berio, Leonardo Balada, Robert Beaser, Nicholas Maw, George Rochberg, Daniel Bernard Roumain and Kurt Schwertsik. The Atlanta Journal noted, “Eliot Fisk proved once more that he is a connoisseur’s guitarist. His programming is invariably imaginative, his technique effortless…If you didn’t know better, you’d think playing the guitar was easy.”

Many of Eliot’s recordings have entered the Billboard charts as best sellers. Two solo CDs featuring contemporary works written for and transcribed by Eliot Fisk were released to great acclaim in 2010 by Wildner Records. Upcoming releases include “Amazing Grace” with Richard Stoltzman (clarinet) and 2 additional CDs with Paco Pena (flamenco guitar) and cellist Yehud Hanani.

Within a one month period in 2013 Fisk premiered songs for cello, voice and guitar by Robert Beaser, a new arrangement for 2 guitars and orchestra of William Bolcom’s Graceful Ghost Rag by Payton McDonald, and Ralf Gawlick’s mammoth tribute to German artist Kaethe Kollwitz, Kollwitz Konnex, for soprano and guitar. Other recent landmark premieres have included Robert Beaser’s “Guitar Concerto” (with Dennis Russell Davies at Zankel Hall in New York City) Eliot’s transcription for solo guitar of John Corigliano’s “Red Violin Caprices” and the epic solo suite “Ein Kleines Requiem” dedicated to him by Austrian composer Kurt Schwertsik.

Eliot Fisk was the last direct pupil of Andres Segovia and also studied interpretation with the legendary harpsichordist Ralph Kirkpatrick at Yale University, from which he graduated “summa cum laude” in 1976. Described by one New York Times headline as a “Fiery Missionary to the Unconverted”, Eliot Fisk is Professor at the Universitaet Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria, where he teaches in 5 languages, and in Boston at the New England Conservatory.

In June 2006, King Juan Carlos of Spain, awarded Eliot the “Cruz de Isabel la Catolica” for his service to the cause of Spanish music. Earlier recipients of this honor included Andres Segovia and Yehudi Menuhin.

Eliot Fisk is Founder and Artistic Director of  Boston GuitarFest an annual cross- disciplinary and cross- cultural extravaganza co-sponsored by the New England Conservatory and Northeastern University and now in its 8th consecutive year.

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Deutsch

Geboren in Philadelphia (USA) graduierte Eliot Fisk an der Yale University, wo er seine B.A. (summa cum Laude) und M.M. erhielt und bei Ralph Kirkpatrick studierte. Anschließend wurde er mit nur 22 Jahren mit der Gründung einer Gitarrenabteilung beauftragt.

1974 wurde er seinem geliebten Vorbild Andres Segovia vorgestellt, erhielt mehrere Jahre privaten Unterricht von ihm und wurde vom großem Meister auch begeistert unterstützt. 1981 schrieb Segovia über ihn, „He belongs in the first rank of our artistic world“.

Eliot Fisk ist in allen wichtigen Konzertsälen der Welt mit Soloprogrammen, als Solist mit Orchester und zusammen mit Kammermusikkollegen wie Paula Robinson (Flöte), Lucero Tena (Kastagnetten), dem Julliard Streichquartett, aufgetreten. Seine Neugier hat ihn auch dazu geführt, weltweite Tourneen in ungewöhnlichen Kombinationen wie z.B. mit Joe Pass (Jazzgitarre), Burhan Öcal (Türkische Tradition) und Paco Pena (Flamencogitarre) zu gestalten. Am 1. Mai 2009 wurde das Gitarrenkonzert von Robert Beaser in der Carnegie Hall unter der Leitung von Dennis Russel Davies mit großem Erfolg uraufgeführt.

In Salzburg, wo er seit 1989 Prof. für Gitarre am Mozarteum ist, hat er das innovative Projekt „Guitar and Friends“ ins Leben gerufen. Diese Initiative versucht, jungen Musikern Erfahrungen in „Outreach“ Aktivitäten zu vermitteln und die klassische Musik in allen möglichen Gattungen einem breites Publikum an untypischen Aufführungsorten näher zu bringen.

Viele bedeutende Komponisten haben entscheidende Werke für ihn geschrieben unter anderem Luciano Berio (Sequenza XI und Chemin V), George Rochberg (Muse of Fire, American Bouquet, Eden Out of Time and Out of Space), Robert Beaser (Mountain Songs, Notes on a Southern Sky, Guitar Concerto), Xavier Montsalvatge (3 Fados), Nicholas Maw (Music of Memory), Leonardo Balada (Caprichos für Gitarre und Streichquartett), Kurt Schwertsik (Ein kleines Requiem), Daniel Bernard Roumain (Gitarrenkonzert „We March“).

Eliot Fisk ist weltweit für seine gewagten Bearbeitungen bekannt: Erstmalig alle 24 Capricci von Paganini/op.1, Bachs 6 Sonaten und Partiten für solo-Violine, zahlreiche Cembalosonaten von Domenico Scarlatti, sämtliche Werke Vivaldis für Zupfinstrumente, zeitgenössische Werke wie die Sonate op. 20a von Cristobal Halffter, die Caprice Variationen von George Rochberg oder die „The Red Violin Caprices“ von John Corigliano und vieles mehr. Alle diese Werke sind von Eliot Fisk auch eingespielt und die meisten Aufnahmen wurden prämiert und gingen in die amerikanischen Billboard Charts als „Bestseller“ ein.

1996 wurde er von der spanischen Königsfamilie eingeladen, um im Palacio de los Cordova in der spanischen Stadt Granada für Präsident Bill Clinton und Familie zu konzertieren.

Das von Eliot Fisk gegründete „Boston Guitar Festival“ erlebte gerade sein 4. erfolgreiches Jahr. Die Philosophie dieser besonderen Veranstaltung ist die musikalische Konfrontation innerhalb eines grenzüberschreitenden Programms, wobei verschiedenste Instrumente, kontrastierende Stilrichtungen und verwandte Themen im musikalischen wie im allgemein künstlerischen Kulturbereich erlebt werden können.

Eliot Fisk – German Bio as PDF

Italiano

“Questa registrazione abbaglierà i violinisti e scoraggerà i chitarristi”… Time Magazine.

Nel 1996 ha inciso in esclusiva, su incarico di M.me Emilia Segovia, Marquesa di Salobrena, composizioni inedite del marito. Ed anche questo disco è entrato nei charts di Billboard. Tra i più recenti dischi di Eliot Fisk sono, le 6 Trio Sonate BWV 525 –530, originalmente per organo (col cembalista Albert Fuller), le 6 Sonate e Partite BWV 1001 – !006, di J. S. Bach per violino solo (nella trascrizione di Fisk per chitarra), un disco dedicato alle opere scritte per Fisk dall’ eminente compositore Geroge Rochberg (colla Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center e Paula Robison) e una registrazione del Concierto Magico di Leonardo Balada con Mo. Jose’ Serebrier e l’ Orchestra di Barcellona, nominato da Amazon.com come uno dei 10 migliori dischi del anno 2001.

Universalmente riconosciuto, come uno dei più grandi chitarristi della propria generazione, Eliot Fisk è stato recentemente insignito della “Croce di Santa Isabella La Cattolica”, ovvero la più alta onorificenza autorizzata dal Re di Spagna per i servigi resi alla musica spagnola, solo tre volte nella storia: A. Segovia, Y. Menuhin, E. Fisk.

La serata di presentazione ufficiale si è tenuta in occasione dell’apertura “Boston Guitar Fest” di quest’anno (tra l’altro da lui fondato e diretto) nell’ambito della “Jordan Hall”, una delle sale statunitensi di più marcata tradizione storica.

Eliot Fisk, grazie all’incredibile virtuosismo ed all’ineguagliabile versatilità, è nel corso della propria carriera apparso sia in recital per chitarra sola, sia in duo con il celebre chitarrista spagnolo Paco Peña, presso le sale concertistiche più importanti che la tradizione musicale possa vantare ed è inoltre Docente presso l’Università del Mozarteum di Salisburgo, nonché presso il Conservatorio del New England – USA.

A lui il celebre e compianto Luciano Berio ha voluto dedicare la famosa “Sequenza per chitarra”. Egualmente, Eliot ha del famoso Maestro inciso innumerevoli opere appositamente trascritte.

Non manchiamo di ricordare in tal contesto le sue memorabili esecuzioni di trascrizioni di opere di Bach, Scarlatti, Mozart, Haydn, Paganini, oltre alle commissioni di compositori della fama di: Berio, Balda, Beaser, Bolcom, Montsalvatge, Maw, Rochberg, Schwertsik.

Ha peraltro collaborato con nomi del livello di: Ute Lemper, Richard Stolzman, Bill Frisell, Burhan Öchan, Joe Pass e Lucero Tena.

Futuri impegni prevedono una lunga tourneé Europea al fianco di Bill Frisell nel Febbraio 2013.

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