SIU International Guitar Festival 2021

Message from Dr. Lausell


   In the fall of 2020 we would have hosted the 7th edition of the SIU Guitar Festival but our plans had to be postponed due to the pandemic. It was a very difficult year. We lost dear friends, our local businesses went through the roughest patch in their history and as a community we are still experiencing the aftermath of such an experience.


   In the midst of it all we pressed forward. The students worked hard and thrived whether it was by observing social distancing or through online instruction. We found ways to connect with the world and learn from each other thanks to remote learning resources and the various Zoom lectures and master classes.


   As we slowly start to regain normalcy and resume our activities it seems fitting that the guitar festival this year should be a homecoming festivity, something that also celebrates the connections our program has made with guitarists and musicians from all over the world.


   In honor to this we take on a new name and make our debut as the SIU International Guitar Festival.  Thanks to the support of the SIU Foundation Grant and our visiting faculty from various institutions from domestic and abroad we will be enjoying concerts, lectures and master classes that explore the guitar from different perspectives and traditions.


    Who is this festival for? Anyone who loves guitar music! We have activities suitable for professional musicians, aspiring guitar students, weekend warriors or anybody that enjoys good music.


Stay healthy, stay safe and see you soon,


Dr. Isaac Lausell




Prof. Freddie Burgos – Drum set, Ensembles

Dr. George Brozak – Director of Athletic Bands, History of Rock and Roll

Dr. Dick Kelley – Director of the SIU School of Music (Saxophone, Jazz & Composition)

Dr. Isaac Lausell – Artistic Director (Classical & Jazz Guitar, Composition)

Dr. Christopher Allen – Classical Guitar 

Prof. Aldemar Valentín – Bass Guitar & Jazz Composition

Dr. Christopher Walczak – Theory & Composition

Dr. Zvonimir Tot – Jazz Guitar, Theory & Composition



  • 9:00 am–11:00 am: Classical guitar master class – Dr. Christopher Allen
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 117)

  • 11:15 am–12:15 pm: Composing for guitar – Dr. Chris Walczak
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 117)

  • 7:30 pm: Classical guitar recital – Prof. Marcus DeJesus
    (Old Baptist Foundation Recital Hall)


  • 10:00 am–11:00 am: Starting a career in music – Prof. Marcus DeJesus
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 114)

  • 11:10 am–12:15 pm: History of Rock – Dr. George Brozak
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 114)

  • 7:30 pm: Classical Guitar Recital – Dr. Christopher Allen
    (Old Baptist Foundation Recital Hall)


  • 10:00 am–11:00 am: Jazz Composition – Prof. Aldemar Valentín
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 117)

  • 11:10 am–12:10 pm: The study of rhythm for guitarists – Prof. Freddie Burgos
    (Altgeld Hall, Room 117)

  • 7:30 pm: Jazz Recital – Prof. Aldemar Valentín & Prof. Freddie Burgos feat. Dr. Dick Kelley & Dr. Isaac Lausell
    (Shryock Auditorium)


  • 10:00 am–11:30 am: Voicing chords for Jazz Guitar – Dr. Zvonimir Tot

  • 7:30 pm: Jazz Guitar Recital – Dr. Zvonimir Tot & Dr. Isaac Lausell feat. Prof. Freddie Burgos & Prof. Aldemar Valentín.

*Note: OBF is the Old Baptist Foundation also known as Doyle Hall.

We have opportunities for local and national business and enterprises interested in sponsoring the guitar festival. For more detailed information of the levels of sponsorship, contact Dr. Isaac Lausell at


  • 4-day pass plus opening Gala – Includes admission to all the concerts, lectures and master classes during the entire festival - $50

  • 1-day pass - Includes admission to all the concerts, lectures and master classes for the festival on either 9/28 or 9/29 - $20.00  

  • Single event pass – This is good for a single admission to a master class, a lecture or a recital. $12.00 - general audience/ $6 students.

  • ALL EVENTS are free to students, faculty and staff of the SIU School of Music.

  • If you have a high school or middle school music program and would like to be sponsored to attend the festival contact Dr. Lausell for more information at

Register (cash or check) at the door or send us a check payable to “Southern Illinois University.” Specify in the memo line at the bottom that it is for the “SIU International Guitar Festival” and enclose the provided form specifying the event(s) for which you are registering. Mail the completed form with check to:

Attn: Betty Johnson
School of Music—Altgeld 103
Southern Illinois University
1000 South Normal Avenue
Carbondale, IL 62901
Mailcode 4302

  • Facebook Social Icon
  • Instagram Social Icon