Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music College of Communication and Fine Arts Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music



lily afshar playing guitar

Lily Afshar has been called “one of the world’s foremost classical guitarists” by Public Radio International. She was honored as the 2000 Orville H. Gibson Award for Best Female Classical Guitarist and has won the Grand Prize at the Aspen Music Festival Guitar Competition. Her collaborations have resulted in premieres of new works by many contemporary composers and her six CD’s and DVD’s have attracted critical acclaim. She has published two books “Essential Bach” and “Five Popular Persian Ballads” with Mel Bay editions.

Dr. Afshar was “Artistic Ambassador to Africa” for the United States Information Agency. She is head of the University of Memphis guitar program where she received the Board of Visitors Eminent Faculty Award and the Alumni Association Distinguished Teaching and Research Award. She is Artistic Director of the Festival.


aaron larget-caplan playing guitar

Aaron Larget-Caplan comes to Memphis from Boston. He is a graduate of New England Conservatory and is on faculty at the Boston Conservatory and University of Massachusetts Boston.  He gives regular recitals and master classes throughout the country and premiers new woks written for the guitar.

Aaron has released two solo CD’s and has received grants and awards from the New England Foundation for the Arts, American Composers Forum, Denver Classical Guitar Society, D'Addario Foundation, Mu Phi Epsilon and the Massachusetts Cultural Council (MCC). He has performed and studied at festivals in Italy, Spain, Canada, and the United States.


Rene Izquierdo playing guitar

Rene Izquierdo, a native of Cuba, graduated from the Guillermo Tomas, Amadeo Roldan Conservatory and Superior Institute of Art in Havana. In the United States, Mr. Izquierdo earned a Master of Music and Artist Diploma degrees from the Yale University School of Music. Rene has appeared as a guest soloist and in chamber music concerts throughout the United States, Cuba and Europe. He has shared the stage with prestigious guitarists including Eliot Fisk, Benjamin Verdery and Jorge Morel, as well as renowned flutist Ransom Wilson, soprano Lucy Shelton, David Jolley and Paquito d’Rivera. Renowned composers such as Jorge Morel and Carlos R. Rivera have dedicated works to him.

Mr. Izquierdo is a recipient of numerous awards. He is a winner of JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Competition in 2004, Extremadura International Guitar Competition, Schadt String competition, Stotsenberg International Guitar Competition among others. He is currently professor of classical guitar at the Wisconsin State University in Milwaukee.




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Last Updated: 12/18/13