©2019 by Dennis Koster

DENNIS KOSTER

Flamenco & Classical Guitarist

      While still in his teens, Dennis Koster began his career as a flamenco guitarist .  Today’s flamenco has become a jazz-influenced and infused art, but Dennis Koster carries on the tradition of concert-classical flamenco guitar first introduced to the music-loving public in Paris in 1927 by the great Don Ramón Montoya and brought to the world by his followers Niño Ricardo, Mario Escudero and Sabicas.  Koster is one of the few guitarists ever to have learned this music directly from both Mario Escudero and the legendary Sabicas.   He has celebrated this legacy in radio and concert performances throughout the United States, Japan, Spain and Latin America.  A great virtuoso performer, Koster is widely regarded as this country’s leading authority on flamenco guitar, being the author of the internationally best-selling three volume flamenco method the Keys to Flamenco Guitar, its newly revised second edition was released  by Mel Bay Publications.  

            Dennis Koster’s 1975 Carnegie Recital Hall debut as a classical guitarist, was hailed in the New York Times as “ a considerable success... a brilliant, aptly fantastic performance”, earning special attention because of his transcription of Zoltan Kodaly’s Sonata for Solo Cello, Op. 8.  Since that time, Dennis Koster has earned a considerable reputation for the quality and depth of his original transcriptions for guitar, carrying on the tradition of Francisco Tárrega and his followers.  “Tárrega’s transcriptions are a corner stone of guitar literature” says Mr. Koster.  “In successfully translating to the guitar great masterworks from the violin, piano and even string quartet, Tárrega not only expanded the technical vocabulary of the guitar, but also demonstrated to music-lovers worldwide the expressive weight and depth of the guitar’s voice”.  Dennis Koster’s Alice Tully Hall concert in November 2002  included selections from his new Musical Heritage Society release Mozart Fantasy on Guitar – Dennis Koster Plays Mozart, Beethoven, Schumann and Brahms.  Also available on the MusicMasters label of the MHS is Koster’s landmark recording Flamenco Clásico – Concert Solos for Flamenco Guitar.
 
 

CRITICAL ACCLAIM FOR THE ARTISTRY OF
DENNIS KOSTER


 

" ...Bold!...Brilliant!...Masterly!...Fantastic!..."

THE NEW YORK TIMES


" A Brilliant, Aptly Fantastic Performance...

A Masterly Command of the Instrument."

THE NEW YORK TIMES

 

" Koster, Shifting From Flamenco Guitar To Classic,

Has Considerable Success."

" The most fascinating offering was the guitarist's own transcription of Kodaly's Sonata for solo cello (Op. 8),

which has become a proving ground for virtuoso cellists. In Mr. Koster's version,

the Sonata became a startlingly different piece, a worthwhile piece in its own right."
THE NEW YORK TIMES

" He Made the Music Genuinely Exciting."

" That Mr. Koster has a big technique there is no doubt. Regardless of the musical style or specific work involved, Mr. Koster seem all authority. The sounds he drew from the guitar were splendidly colorful and varied, the rhythms at once supple, steady and compelling. Mr. Koster made flamenco sound considerably vital and meaningful."
THE NEW YORK TIMES

" Dennis Koster Plays Own Guitar Work in A Bold Program."

" IMPRESSIVE!...He was able to toss off difficult runs and sculpt long melodies with complete confidence. And it is no small compliment to Mr. Koster's artistry to report that he seemed genuinely at home both in the sober Bach (Lute Suite No. 2) and in his own suite, a bracing flamenco work.

The transcription (Bartok's Chaconne and Fuge) succeeded imposingly."

THE NEW YORK TIMES

 

" His Technical Artistry is Amazing - Perhaps the Finest

I Have Ever Personally Heard."

" Dennis also has great ability in establishing rapport with audiences - comments about his recital here at Music in the Mountains were all most positive. I look forward to his return to our festival."

PAUL PERRY, ARTISTIC DIRECTOR

MUSIC IN THE MOUNTAINS, NEVADA CITY, CA

 

" Guitarist's Deft Playing Impresses Symphony Audience."

" Virtuoso guitarist Dennis Koster was enthusiastically received by the capacity Civic Center audience as he demonstrated his talents in two concertos for guitar and orchestra and a set of solo guitar works. He commanded rapt attention from the audience from the onset and WAS ACCORDED A STANDING OVATION AFTER HIS PERFORMANCE OF JOAQUIN RODRIGO'S CONCIERTO DE ARANJUEZ."

WYOMING TRIBUNE

 

" Dennis Koster Is An Exceptional Interpreter of My Compositions."

SABICAS

 

" A Master Guitarist and A Master of Flamenco."

CBS TV

 

" Utterly Magnificent! - One of the Great Guitarists of Our Time."

WEVD RADIO, NEW YORK

 

" An Astounding Performance!."
" He exploded the myth that one must be Gitano (Spanish gypsy) in order to

understand and capture the spirit of flamenco ."
SOUNDBOARD MAGAZINE

 

" A Singular Guitarist!"
"Somehow, Dennis Koster has mastered both classical and flamenco guitar. Like no other guitarist I've heard, he plays both styles brilliantly and without a hint of compromise. This recording (Two Sides of Dennis Koster - La Bella Records) shows it as indisputably as any of his outstandingly successful concert appearances. At midpoint, he simply changes guitars and shifts musical gears, adding a completely new dimension to an already impressive tour de force. The result is ONE OF THE MOST SATISFYING LISTENING EXPERIENCES IMAGINABLE."
BROOK ZERN, FLAMENCO EDITOR
GUITAR REVIEW MAGAZINE

 

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Dennis Koster

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