by Mike Telin

KELLY-ArminThis weekend marks the fourteenth installment of the Cleveland International Classical Guitar Festival. Beginning at 10:00 am on Friday, May 30 and continuing through Sunday evening, June 1 at the Cleveland Institute of Music, CICGF will present recitals and master classes by Robert Gruca, guitar; Nigel North, lute and soprano Carrie Henneman Shaw; Petra Polácková, guitar; SoloDuo, duo guitars; and Jason Vieaux, guitar and Julien Labro, bandoneón.

This year’s festival also includes lectures by Brad DeRoche, Nigel North and master guitar makers Jeffrey R. Elliott and Cyndy Burton. Guitars International will host a Performance Exhibition of Fine Classical Guitars featuring Krystin O. Mara, and a special recital given by CIM students will precede Sunday’s closing concert. Please check our concert listings page for event details. Interviews with four of the artists appear below.

In this season’s colorful and informative program book, Armin Kelly (above), founder and owner of Guitars International and artistic director of the Cleveland International Classical Guitar Festival, writes: “My reasons for presenting these events are five fold: (1) to help increase the awareness and respect due artists whose exemplary work has enhanced my life and the lives of others; (2) to entertain; (3) to educate; and (4) to encourage deeper thought and discussion about how we listen to, perform, and evaluate fine music. Above all else though, my primary reason for presenting these events is to help facilitate shared moments of human awareness.”