Striking the Right Chords at the Adelaide Guitar Festival

A proud celebration of Adelaide’s UNESCO City of Music, the carefully curated 2023 Guitar Festival program spans across a wide range of styles.

Classical guitarist Slava Grigoryan combines his renowned ensemble, MGQ with a cellist to perform an intimate and moving programme of admired classical works. Other highlights include Australian folk sister duo Charm of Finches, sonic adventurer Jimmybay and acoustic/folk/alt country artist Alana Jagt.

Antoine Boyer & Yeore Kim

Nurtured in the cradle of gypsy jazz, Antoine Boyer (France) and Yeore Kim (Korea) explore the boundaries of music with a rich palette of sounds. They have toured extensively in Europe and US, sharing the stage with musicians such as Philip Catherine, Stochelo Rosenberg and Christian Escoude. Their CD ‘Leske’ was awarded ‘Revelation Guitare Classique 2016’ by French magazine Guitare Acoustic.

Featuring a restless bass, a keening sax and swirling vocal harmonies their long seamless piece was given an extra dimension by the incredible mountain scenery. Goller’s high clear voice soared, her electric bass roaming the chords like an aura of energy while Kinzelman swung with intense vibrato and sang with melancholy long harmony notes.

An acclaimed Australian singer/songwriter and two-time Grammy nominee The Milk Carton Kids return to Adelaide with a program combining delicious harmonies, intricate guitars and wry humour. The band’s debut album ‘Moving On’ won acclaim from both music lovers and critics for their unique blend of American folk, indie pop and contemporary jazz.

Featuring multi-award winning artists Kathleen Halloran and Freya Josephine Hollick, South Australia’s stormy folk-rock sensation Alana Jagt showcase their outstanding songwriting and stellar bands in the festival’s intimate club series. Celebrated Australian Oud virtuoso Joseph Tawadros brings his brilliant technique and profound musicianship to the stage in an exclusive solo presentation.

Oliver Fartch-Naini

Bringing together world-class guitarists and creating unique partnerships that celebrate the versatility of the instrument, Adelaide Guitar Festival is the place to be for pickers, pluckers and strummers of every stripe. From the classical to the blues, gypsy jazz and beyond, a feast of musical adventures awaits over three weeks in July. Previous editions have welcomed a host of renowned artists including Kaki King, Vernon Reid, Punch Brothers and Abigail Washburn.

Oliver Fartach-Naini has established a worldwide reputation for innovative collaborations that span a wide range of styles from tango and oriental to classical and contemporary forms. His touring, master classes and festivals as well as radio and TV appearances have brought him international acclaim. He has recorded 7 CDs with different chamber music formations on the German labels Deutsche Grammophon, Kreuzberg and Acoustic Music Records. German publisher Edition Margaux honoured him in 2006 with the publication of the series Collection Oliver Fartach-Naini featuring compositions dedicated to him by composers from all over the world.

Originally from South Australia, Alana Jagt’s stormy folk-rock noir delivers a rich blend of musical colours that’s both refreshing and familiar. Having cut her teeth at her parents’ ramshackle blues barn, she has supported some of Australia’s best musicians including Abbe May, Thelma Plum, Ali Barter and Killing Heidi.

Mike Bevan & Alain Valodze

A proud celebration of Adelaide’s designation as UNESCO City of Music, this three week festival pays tribute to the world’s most versatile instrument. The festival’s Artistic Director Slava Grigoryan presents a world-class lineup of classical, jazz, rock, blues and experimental guitar, while also hosting masterclasses and workshops to nurture local talent.

Featuring artists from across the state, this year’s ‘On the Road’ program sees Adelaide Guitar Festival go beyond the city to regional South Australia for an immersive series of micro events. Bringing world-class musicians to regional centres, the ‘On the Road’ program delivers economic benefits through the arts and brings together local communities to share a common passion for guitar.

Internationally renowned guitarists Mike Bevan and Alain Valodze join forces in their dynamic string duo, Caliente. Sharing a love for Brazilian and Latin rhythms, the duo performs intricate arrangements of Brazilian choro and samba alongside gypsy, tango, flamenco and classical guitar repertoires.

The festival’s final week will feature a number of popular Riverland acts including indie folk sister duo Charm of Finches, blues/folk performers Jimmybay and Winston Robinson, plus multi award-winning chart-topping blues artist Ash Grunwald. This will be followed by the 2022 Adelaide International Classical Guitar Competition champion Connor Whyte making his solo concert debut in Dunstan Playhouse. A prodigy of sublime control and nuanced dynamic range, Whyte is sure to enchant audiences with his stunning musicianship.

Manus Noble

Distinguished from the pack by his warm engaging personality and musical intelligence, Manus Noble is fast becoming one of the UK’s most in demand young guitarists. Nurtured in the cradle of French gypsy jazz, he traverses genres with dazzling skill and profound musical understanding. Joined by Korean harmonica virtuosa Yeore Kim, they explore jazz, gypsy and classical styles with breathtaking creative interplay.

Adelaide Guitar Festival celebrates the versatility of its namesake instrument across a broad program of concerts, masterclasses and workshops from July 1-16. From soaring orchestral pieces to swamp rockin’ boogie blues and the acoustic sounds of an ancient Australian lap slide and steel-bodied resonator guitar, there is something for every music lover.

The festival’s acclaimed masterclass program returns, offering local musicians an opportunity to learn from world-class performers. Highlights include a performance by the Melbourne Guitar Quartet, who bring a stunning array of contemporary and traditional works to the stage. The festival also welcomes back Adelaide metal band Freedom of Fear, who shatter expectations with a sonic assault of double-guitar shredding and astounding musicianship.

Throughout the festival, guitarists and their fans will gather in regional SA to enjoy curated, family-friendly performances by the state’s finest players. From the sandy beaches of the state’s far west to flood-affected communities in the Riverland, Adelaide Guitar Festival – On the Road takes its distinctive brand of guitar playing to local audiences.