A Little Lunch Music, 10/15: Katie Holmes, Classical Guitar

Classical Guitarist Katie Holmes

Classical guitarist Katie Holmes will perform a free concert for A Little Lunch Music on October 15 from noon to 1:00 pm. On the program will be music by Johann Sebastian Bach, Manuel Ponce, and Vojislav Ivanovi?, among others. The concert is being sponsored by Seth and Linda Anderson. The café menu is available online.

Classical Guitarist Katie Holmes

Katie Holmes is a young classical guitarist from Alabama. She is currently pursuing a degree in guitar performance at Columbus State University’s Schwob School of Music. There, she is a Woodruff Artist and an Honors student, and studies under Dr. Andrew Zohn.

To Katie, music is elemental, a constant in her first few years. She was four when her grandmother began taking guitar lessons. Charmed by this new voice, Katie soon had the lessons for herself, and an intense bond with the guitar began. She gave her first solo recital in Spokane, Washington – on guitar and piano – at age five. Within a year she received her first grant for talent; within the next the sound of her guitar first appeared on radio. Soon after moving to Alabama she was invited to play with the Montgomery Symphony Orchestra, marking her first performance with orchestra at the age of seven.

Since then Katie has participated in guitar festivals around the Southeast, winning competitions at East Carolina State University, Columbus State University, and MusicFest NorthWest (in Spokane, Washington). She placed highly in middle- and high-school level competitions at Georgia College & State University, Appalachian State University, and in the YoungArts National Competition. She has been a featured performer at the Tennessee State University Guitar Festival multiple times.

Ms. Holmes has given solo performances in concert halls, theaters and auditoriums, art galleries and museums, care facilities, houses of worship, public parks, and private residences. Her guitar sings in classrooms, hallways, and stairwells, upon sidewalk and street, and for radio and television. Beside her recitals stand Katie’s performance with and membership in local school bands, community theaters, and chorales for which she has sung, played piano, percussion, clarinet, and guitar. Katie was for three years Pianist at First Presbyterian Church of Montgomery, before leaving to pursue her studies at CSU. She continues to be a working musician, though her availability is mightily constrained by her college schedule.

She released her first CD of solo guitar pieces, Prelude, in 2013, which was subsequently played on the “Guitar Hour” radio show on KPBX, and her first full-length album, Quinceañera, in 2014. She hopes to release many more recordings.

In 2005 Katie began her private study with Andrew Zohn. Since then she has also received high praise in masterclass performances with guitarists David Russell, Martha Masters, William Kanengiser, Dale Kavanaugh, SoloDuo, Xuefei Yang, Paul Galbraith, and others from around the world. Besides the universal regard for her ability to learn, she is known for her lyrical and expressive playing, and her delightful personality. Even with the immense enjoyment from these classes with guitar masters, Zohn still holds a special place in her heart. In addition to his extensive knowledge of the repertoire and uncanny ability to select beautiful pieces for study, “He agreed to teach someone 10 years younger than his regular students!” says Katie. Eight years later, at age fifteen, she became one of those regular students when she began her own degree program still under his tutelage.

Though she has been a professional musician for years, Ms. Holmes has devoted herself to greater things yet. In this her foundation is quite secure. Since the beginning she has been known as “that wonderful young guitarist,” and there can be no doubt that, as David Russell commented, “she has a very good future in this field.” But, “It’s not enough to be a good ‘young’ guitarist,” says Katie. Her acceptance of Woodruff Artist is part of a commitment to continuing work, study, and growth, beyond youth, in hopes of becoming a world-class performer. Whether she is able to reach such lofty goals, as her fascination persists, we shall see. In the meantime, she continues to delight listeners wherever her guitar sings.

See more at katiehguitar.com.

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