A leading Bay Area guitarist and veteran member of the groundbreaking San Francisco Guitar Quartet, Mark Simonsís natural musicality and impressive technique have long been critically acclaimed. His diverse and engaging programming is notable for its variety, depth and color. He has presented numerous concerts, both as soloist and chamber musician throughout New England, the Mid Atlantic, California and Germany. Recent touring with the San Francisco Guitar Quartet has included Texas, Florida, Arizona, Guam and the Republic of Taiwan. Mark has also toured with the Grammy Award winning Los Angeles Guitar Quartet and currently performs in duet with flutist Catherine Payne of the San Francisco Symphony. Mr. Simons has released three critically acclaimed recordings with the San Francisco Guitar Quartet and an upcoming solo recording is eagerly anticipated.
Mark Simonsís enduring devotion to new, World and improvisatory music is evidenced by numerous performances as well as recordings of several world premieres including: “Variacione Casi Latina” by Dusan Bogdanovic (written for Mark Simons) and Paul Dresherís “Guitar Quartet 1975” (world premiere recording by the SFGQ). Mark Simonsís playing is featured on all three recorded releases by the San Francisco Guitar Quartet, including the recently released “Silhouette” (2006). The 2003 SFGQ release “Compadres” was awarded “Top CD of 2003” by Acoustic Guitar magazine.
Mr. Simons was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in Guitar Performance to Stuttgart, Germany and received both the Outstanding Graduate and Chamber Music Departmental Awards from the University of Southern California School of Music where he was an Assistant Lecturer and Outreach Coordinator for the Guitar Department. Mark Simons holds degrees from the New England Conservatory of Music, Tufts University, The University of Southern California and the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University. Mr. Simons currently runs a private teaching studio in San Francisco (North Beach) and also instructs at the City College of San Francisco, The San Domenico School Music Conservatory and Diablo Valley College.