The Wilmington Classical Guitar Society is excited to present award-winning guitarist Phil Goldenberg! We’ve had our eye on Phil for quite some time now, since his time as a student at Rowan University with Joseph Mayes, to his master’s studies at the Cleveland Institute of Music with Jason Vieaux, and eventually his professional studies with Michael Newman at the Mannes School of Music. We’ve watched him win several international guitar competitions, and thoroughly enjoyed his winner’s recital with the Philadelphia Classical Guitar Society after winning the PCGS International Classical Guitar Competition. In other words, we’ve waited a long time to invite him to our stage, but now the wait is over. I hope you’ll join us for this exciting young artist’s Wilmington debut!
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11/13/21: Phil Goldenberg will be teaching a masterclass in the afternoon of Saturday, November 13 at 1:30 pm in the West Room of Presbyterian Church of the Covenant. The masterclass is free to observe and open to the public, but registration is required. Register as an auditor to sit in and hear what Mr. Goldenberg has to teach our guest performers, or register as a performer for your chance to perform for Phil and have him critique your performance (a small tuition fee applies). Register as either an auditor or performer in our Online Store.
Performing as a soloist, Phil Goldenberg has established himself as one of his generation’s leading guitarists. Through his expressive and sensitive playing he has moved audiences in concert halls and festivals around the world.
In 2020, Phil co-founded the non-profit organization Ex-Aequo, a classical guitar advocacy group dedicated to using the member’s skills and notoriety for social good and expansion of the classical guitar audience. Just two weeks after the US COVID-19 lockdown, Phil, along with co-founders Hannah Murphy and Evan Taucher, organized and put on the first ever online guitar festival using the members of Ex-Aequo. This festival had thousands of viewers on Instagram and Facebook and provided completely free masterclasses to students all over the world. Shortly after the success of the festival, Ex-Aequo hosted the largest ever online guitar competition which had more than 150 competitors apply for the first round. This competition was unique in that it promoted equality and diversity among artists and had no first prize, only 4 equal Augustine Grand Prizes given to the most unique and expressive artists in the finals.
Ex-Aequo then embarked on a project aimed at tackling the long-standing issue of underrepresentation in classical guitar. Through the project “Changing the Canon,” which was made possible by a generous grant from the Augustine Foundation, Ex-Aequo commissioned 9 Black American composers to write solo guitar music for 9 members of Ex-Aequo. For many of the composers, this was the first time they were commissioned to write for guitar, despite being able to play the instrument themselves. These works are being recorded and compiled into a visual album including performance videos, behind the scenes footage of the recording process, interviews with the composers and more, to be released Fall 2021. In the Spring of 2021, one of the pieces, “Broomsticks” by Mason Bynes, was arranged into a guitar ensemble piece and was played by the students in the Austin City School District through a collaboration with Austin Classical Guitar. Ex-Aequo was also able to bring these composers into the schools to talk with the students about their motivation for writing music, their experience being classical composers and answer any questions the students had.
Phil has won multiple international guitar competitions; including recently winning 1st prize at the 2019 Florida Guitar Competition in Tallahasse, Florida. Phil was awarded the 1st prize at the 2018 Charlottesville International Classical Guitar Competition, receiving a near perfect score for his performance of Capricho Arabe by Francisco Tárrega. Earlier that year he won the first prize – Peter Segal Award – in the 2018 Philadelphia Classical Guitar International Competition. Judges remarked on his “considerable sense of drama and varied color and dynamic range,” as well as his sense of “pleasing calm, juxtaposed by moments of technical brilliance.” In 2015, Phil was a fellowship recipient at the Crown of the Continent guitar festival in Bigfork, Montana after winning first prize in the James Stroud Classical Guitar Competition. At that festival, he gave solo concerts and workshops, and collaborated with top musicians across all genres.
Phil plays in a guitar duo with his wife, Hannah Murphy, who is one of the most popular young guitarists of her generation. Their program consists of classic guitar duets juxtaposed by modern guitar solos. Together in 2019 they performed in concerts across the Abruzzo region of Italy as part of a fellowship they were awarded to attend the Lanciano Guitar Seminar. Phil also plays with the New York City Guitar Quartet, an ensemble focused on bringing exciting new works to the classical guitar world. NYCGQ is slated to give the premiere of a new work by Brooklyn based composer Sebastian Zel in Fall 2021.
After studying with Joseph Mayes, famed student of Andrés Segovia, and graduating from Rowan University with a Bachelor of Music in guitar performance, Mr. Goldenberg went on to receive a Master of Music degree in guitar performance with honors from the Cleveland Institute of Music, studying with Grammy Award winner Jason Vieaux. Phil then completed a Professional Studies Diploma at the Mannes School of Music, studying as a scholarship student with international performing artist Michael Newman.
Phil is endorsed by Augustine strings and plays Augustine Paragon Reds. Phil plays a guitar by David J. Pace.