Press

“…It was our pleasure to finally bring you to our venue here at the Kirtland Center for the Performing Arts.  Your performance this past weekend was another testimonial to the talent that we strive to bring to our patrons in this area of the state.  The spontaneous standing ovation at the conclusion of your last programmed piece was indeed a tribute to your masterful and artistic performance. The patrons were in awe of you ability to capture “Bach on a guitar!” I was also impressed by your ability to play all the parts of the fugues with such clarity and precision.  …….I look forward to bringing you back to the Kirtland stage as will the many who experienced your performance.”

Donald E. Wray, Director, Kirtland Center for the Performing Arts. 29 Jan. 2010.

“I was among those enthralled by your exceptionally meaningful concert at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church back on Friday, Feb. 12th……[I] was mesmerized by the magic of what your fingers were able to do on your classical guitar. What nimble agile movement to create such a variety of selections. That in itself was awesome – the range of your repertoire. My hands couldn’t clap hard enough in delight at the close of each number. Whew and wow….It was a privilege to be present”.   Sister Sue Tracy, OP (“MAJIC” Concert Series, Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Downtown Grand Rapids, MI.) 12 February, 2010.

Times Indicator (review excerpt) by Ken DeLaat, Fremont Michigan, June 10 2009:

“Last Friday the Dogwood staff brought classical guitarist Paul Vondiziano
to the Black Box for a one hour performance and his command of the instrument he  so graciously embraces proved to be absolutely stunning in its depth of
character and rapier like precision. Paul does not play the guitar; he
embodies  the spirit of the instrument. The sounds that were produced
transcended any of  my previous personal experiences with guitar music.

After an introduction that included variations from Mozart, he guided the
audience into his next composition, written by himself, named Triptych.
Explaining its creation being a tribute to three of his favorite Greek poets,
Seferis, Kavafis, and Elytis, Paul eased into a blended work with distinctive
movements ranging from melancholy to lilting and spirited, then
transforming  once more into a busier, more complex expression.
His next selection was a Prelude-Fugue-Allegro by Bach (Bach, of course,
needs no introduction) followed by Three Brazilian Pieces composed by Joao
Guimaraes.  His final was a dynamic selection entitled Koyubaba Suite by Carlo
Domeniconi.

Between the musical gems he so deftly laid out for our enjoyment, Mr.
Vondiziano spoke, not only of the music, but of his love for the music. He is
obviously erudite when it comes to the study of music and though he connects
exceptionally well during these Chataqua-like interactions, when he begins
to  perform, he is playing to the music, not the audience. The audience is
privileged to bear witness to this connection but it is surely the music
that  draws the energy and passion once he engages it in this delightfully
cooperative  venture involving instrument and artist. His ability to transport
you to the  places and people he describes when introducing his music reveals
a rather  stunning level of musical communication.

Fielding questions following the performance, it was easy to see the
impact Mr. Vondiziano’s performance had made on an audience that appeared
transfixed by what they were experiencing throughout the concert. Many expressed how the
music had touched them while others asked about his other musical tastes and educational background.

This gentle man who plays with such precision mixed with a fervor that
draws rapt attention from an appreciative crowd provided attendees with an
entertaining as well as educational experience and left guitar players such as
myself to later on stare at their instruments with awe and respect for what
levels can be achieved by them in the hands of a master such as Mr. Vondiziano.”

Diane Yonker, Program Manager, Dogwood Center for Performing Arts, following 29th of May, 2009 Recital:

“Your concert here at the Dogwood Center for Performing Arts was
performed with impeccable technique and mastery.
Our audience was especially appreciative and captivated by the choice of
repertoire performed with flawless technique and flare.  You transformed
classical melodies into exciting new compositions that sounded fresh and
beautifully orchestrated.
Your performance was one that will be long remembered by a devoted,
appreciative and enthusiastic audience.  It was everything we expected
and MORE!
We feel you are now part of the Dogwood family of entertainers and we
are very grateful for your support and contribution to the arts in our
community.  All the best to you with your future endeavors and we look
forward to working with you again.”

Excerpts form a review in the Greek Classical Guitar Magazine TAR of Paul Vondiziano‘s recital in Athens, Greece, on 2 December 2006, by Takis Atsidakos. (On line in Greek at www.tar.gr) article: http://www.tar.gr/content/content.php?id=415

“A WONDERFULLY WARM AND MUSICAL GUITAR RECITAL.

I have to confess that this occasion was for me one of the best musical evenings, not merely a guitar recital. Everyone there agreed. …….

The calm, human, gracious, I would even say aristocratic nature of Paul is immediately apparent to the audience. He comments and explains briefly and clearly the works he is about to perform, thus enhancing everyone’s listening experience.

The works on the program are demanding: Malbrouck and Mozart Variations by Sor, Second Partita for violin by Bach (the one with the Chaconne), Sonatina by Torroba, Domeniconi’s Koyunbaba, and one of his own compositions (Triptych).

His technical competence is obvious. His playing is clean, totally devoid of string-buzzes or muffled notes. As for the character of his sound and his interpretation, here we have a uniquely personal approach which bestows a distinct freshness to familiar repertoire. It is novel without being eccentric. The Sonatina by Torroba had the required Mediterranean warmth. The Chaconne was deeply moving… Domeniconi’s Koyunbaba was technically brilliant but also very musical. His own work Triptych (in three parts, inspired by the poetry of Seferis, Kavafis, and Elytis)  made a great impression. A tonal work, intensely Mediterranean, with the flavour of the Aegean sea.I hope that his presence in Athens has continuity, so that more people can have the opportunity to get to know his art……”

Also from Sotogrande Digital, Spain, for a recital there on 7 December 2006:

“Prestigious guitarist Paul Vondiziano plays music from Bach to Mediterranean composers with brilliant technique”.

And in the Spanish press Paul Vondiziano’s recital was referred to as: “….one of the ‘Events of the Year’ for Andalusia”.

“…another remarkable solo performance from Paul Vondiziano …….favorite works familiar to those having attended Paul’s many past local performances as well as a few surprises….. The first half of the program was almost entirely given over to a brilliant performance of an arrangement of the Bach violin partita. It was noted during intermission that, in addition to the riveting interpretation of the work, the decision to play the movements without pausing produced a marathon-like work of over thirty minutes. This was humbling for the many* guitarists in attendance.

After intermission, we were treated to three [of Paul's ] original [movements] inspired by….three poems by contemporary Greek poets… The work carried with it a dream or trance-like quality, putting one in mind of works by Leos Janacek but wholly original in structure and temperament. We can only hope that transcriptions of this trio of works will find it’s way to a publisher soon.

The program included other favorites works of Sor and Moreno-Torroba, leaving the audience still hungry for more after a most generous program…………..Paul continued to display the kind of energy he brought to the stage in greeting well-wishers. …….We can now only look forward to another occasion when Paul is brought to the stage for our pleasure.”

Tom Roach, President, Classic Guitar Society of Michigan, in Guitar Notes, Nov. 2006. in review of an Oct.15 recital in* Northville (Detroit area).

“I find your Bach absolutely wonderful . . . so beautiful, so lyrical, yet rhythmically true and graceful . . . what a fine player and musician you are!”

-Katherine Hoover, composer, New York.

“I STILL get positive comments about your performance here, so I hope to bring you back after a one-year break.”

-Derek Emerson, Coordinator

“Great Performance Series”

Hope College.

“Paul Vondiziano is an excellent performer…what struck me from the very outset was his control of the wide range of colors which can be coaxed from the guitar.”

-John L. Allen, Music Critic

The Muskegon Chronicle

Michigan USA

“…Vondiziano proved himself a soloist of distinction…He is a knowledgeable man and a gifted lyricist..an aristocrat among guitarists. ”

-Evert Lutz, Music Critic

Delftsche Courant

The Netherlands

“..Paul Vondiziano..a world class guitarist…”

-Cyprus Weekly

“……especially Bach – really refined cultured playing: congratulations!”

-Ayis Ioannides

Composer, Conductor

(U.K., Australia, Germany, Finland, Cyprus.)

“..a big crowd…a great success…we would invite him again anytime.”

-Dirk M. Hovener, MA Director

Goethe-lnstitute, Staufen, Germany

“…how brilliant this Larnaca-born guitarist is…”

-Sound and Vision

B.F.B.S. Magazine, Cyprus

“..Paul Vondiziano has contributed substantially to musical life in Cyprus.”

-Litsa Koutalari-loannou

Director, European Conservatory of Music

“..superb guitarist…a sensitive musician in full command of his instrument.

He is not only technically proficient, but also admirably at home with

the neo-classical idiom of Rodrigo’s music. ”

-Gerald Elliot, Music Critic

Grand Rapids Press, Grand Rapids, Michigan USA

“As promised, terrific concert. Good luck in the future. ”

-California University of Pennsylvania

California, Pennsylvania

“Mr. Vondiziano’s virtuosity on the instrument also has a warmth and a depth not often heard. ”

-Margarette Ingle

St. Cecilia Music Society

Grand Rapids, Michigan USA

“..The mastery and understanding of this work (Preludios Americanos by the Uruguayan composer, Abel Carlevaro) by the performer helped to

translate its many intricacies to a very appreciative audience..”

-Classic Guitar Society of Michigan

“You presented a tremendous concert at the museum!!! It was a rare and magical event…your artistry together with your delightful dialogue with the audience combined to make it a very talked about event.”

-Melissa A. Freye

Muskegan Museum of Art

Michigan USA

“Thank you very much for your wonderful performance at our campus… your explanations of the composer and the time period made the music so much more meaningful…excellent performance…”

-Linda Fellows

Auburn Hills Fine Arts Committee

Oakland Community College

Detroit, Michigan

“I was delighted to hear you play and to find out, personally, how well and musically you are playing.”

-Will Gay Bottje

Composer (USA)

“…the sonata in D by Spanish composer Joaquin Turina brought out the most fire from the artist…This reviewer was particularly impressed with the rapt attention Mr. Vondiziano drew from his audience during the second movement. The audience was greatly drawn forward to the edge of there seats during its exposition and held suspended on the slowly arpeggiated notes of the final A major chord.”

-Charles Leanord Johnson

“Guitar Notes”

Classic Guitar Society of Michigan

Detroit Michigan

“We enjoyed your concert at Furman University. your playing was sensitive and virtuosic when appropriate. Your comments from the stage were concise and added humor and interest to the program.”

-Charlotte Smith

Furman University

Greenville, South Carolina

“Thanks so much for the wonderful recital of last week. Your playing was effortless, elegant, and thoroughly absorbing.”

-John Worst, Chairman

Calvin College Music Department

Grand Rapids, Michigan