The CSU Guitar Symposium will bring 110-120 participants to Columbus this week.
In its 12th year, the symposium features performances by world-class guitarists and classes and competitions for middle school through college students and young professionals.
This year’s participants are from Canada, Italy, Mexico, France, China and the United States.
While the classes are for symposium participants, anyone can attend the symposium’s competitions and the concerts. Competitions are free and concerts cost $20 each.
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Andrew Zohn, CSU professor of guitar and director of the symposium, is pleased with attendance by the public every year.
“Columbus is a very guitar-friendly town,” he said.
This year’s symposium features three guest artists who have never been to Columbus before. The Newman/Oltman Duo, from New York, will play on Saturday along with Zohn and Xuefei Yang, of the U.K., and Jan Bartlema, of the Netherlands, will play on Sunday.
Zohn said he’s never had a problem attracting guest artists to Columbus. It’s paying them that gets more difficult.
In fact, Zohn said his biggest challenge in organizing the symposium is making sure his budget can handle the expenses including monetary prizes for competition winners, guest artists’ expenses and printing costs for programs and brochures.
Zohn seemed happily surprised that the symposium has reached its 12th year.
“I don’t have the inclination to stop,” he said. “I may do it for 30 years.”