BROOKFIELD - The
Sharon Lynne Wilson Center has announced its first-ever guitar
competition and festival that will take place this summer.
Sponsored by the
Brookfield Convention and Visitors Bureau and Enterforce, Inc., the
competition is meant to showcase guitarists between the ages of 15 and
30. To enter, contestants must submit a performance video which will
be judged to determine who makes it to the invitation-only semifinals
and finals in August.
“A couple of
years ago I was thinking about a festival format,” Wilson Center
Executive Director Jonathan Winkle said. “I’m a trombone player
and I was thinking about big bands. Then I got to know Daryl Stuermer
and thought, ‘What about something that would be more universal?’
It occurred to me the guitar is fairly portable. We ran the concept by
Daryl and other people and they were very enthusiastic.”
will feature four categories - rock-blues, fingerstyle, jazz and
classical. Those who survive the preliminary round in each genre will
perform the first night of the festival for the chance to advance to
the semifinals and perhaps the finals. The festival weekend is Aug. 15
through Aug. 17.
The semifinals and
finals will be judged by a panel of renowned artists from each genre,
including Stuermer, touring member of Genesis and lead guitarist for
Phil Collins; Rene Izquierdo, an internationally renowned classical
guitar soloist; Don Linke, esteemed jazz guitarist and educator; and
John Stropes, legendary fingerstyle guitarist and educator at the Peck
School of the Arts at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
The festival also
will include free master class and clinic opportunities for
participants and auditors and live performances by the panel of
the education process comes in,” Winkle said. “You have access to
great (guitar) players and great performers.”
Linke will play in the Harris Theater on Aug. 15; Lage and Eldridge
will perform in the theater Aug. 16; and Stuermer will perform Aug. 17
at the Gerlach Outdoor Theater, located on the grounds of the Wilson
On the final night
of the festival, the first-place winners will be showcased.
winners in each category will be awarded a $3,000 cash prize, and will
also be featured on a Wilson Center Club Series or Starry Nights
Series performance during the 2013-2014 season. Additional awards
include a $1,500 second prize and a $1,000 third prize in each
category. Supplementary non-cash prizes will be announced at a later
Winkle saluted the
Brookfield Convention and Visitors Bureau and Enterforce Inc. for
their significant support of the festival.
Day and weekend
passes for the festival will go on sale April 15 by calling the Wilson
Center box office at 781-9520 or visiting www.wilson-center.com
“It’s going to
be really fun, and we’re very excited about the event,” Winkle
At a glance
competition will take place in two phases: performance video
submission and an invitation-only live performance for the semifinal
and final rounds at the Wilson Center. Applicants must be between 15
and 30 years of age on Aug. 15, 2013.
The early bird
application fee is $35 received between now and March 31 and then $50
for applications submitted between April 1 and midnight May 31.
Applicants can apply in a maximum of two categories, but will be
required to submit an application fee for both categories. The fee is
must include a performance video of a work from the required
repertoire list to their own YouTube.com channel, which will then be
linked to the Wilson Center Guitar Competition’s YouTube.com
From there, jurors
will select about 15 to 20 semifinalists in each category from the
pool of YouTube applications. They will be invited to perform in the
live semifinal round.
A total of 20
competitors - five in each category - will advance to the final round.
Jurors will be seated behind a screen and will not see the
details on how to apply, as well as competition rules and regulations,