SFCM Guitarist to Perform Three World Premieres in Chile

Musician David Tanenbaum

SFCM instructor and musician David Tanenbuam.

SFCM instructor and musician David Tanenbaum will conduct the National Guitar Ensemble of Chile and perform solo.

By Mark Taylor

It’s a project more than five years in the making—and it’s taking one SFCM professor to one of the southernmost parts of the world to perform.

Musician David Tanenbaum is conducting the National Guitar Ensemble of Chile in world premieres of three American works commissioned for the project, Only in the Darkness Can We See the Stars. Tanenbaum will also perform solo works by Aaron Jay Kernis and Gabriela Lena Frank, all in a Santiago, Chile concert streamed live on July 28th. 

The idea started in 2016 when Tanenbaum collaborated with Chilean composer and guitarist Javier Farias on a project honoring each of the Latin American writers who won the Nobel Prize for Literature. “Javier repeatedly talked about wanting me to introduce new American guitar music to his country, and we got a state department grant to support that effort. Covid delayed the project twice, but it will finally happen,” Tanenbaum said.

Though he has performed in more than 40 countries, this will be Tanenbaum’s first time in Chile. “This one really took five years to materialize, and a lot went into it, from grant writing to commissioning to programming and organizing. My biggest feeling now is excitement that it's finally happening after all this preparation. It is all about making the music and connecting with people after all, and it's time to do that,” he added. 

Created in 2006 by Farías, the National Guitar Ensemble of Chile has had about 60 members since its inception and premiered more than thirty works from across the globe. With the program dedicated to American composers, it will include the world premiere of works by Garry Eister, Ronald Pearl, and Andrew Earle Simpson. 

In addition to the performance which will be streamed live, Tanenbaum will also teach a masterclass in Santiago. 

Learn more about studying guitar at SFCM.