“A new generation of classical guitarist is coming onto the music scene – and many no longer hew to the dogma of the Segovia era. One of those is the supremely talented Benjamin Beirs.” (Sacramento Bee) Performing with “rounded, mellow tone, notably clean left-hand work, and sensitive phrasing,” (Washington Post) here is a guitarist-composer who seeks to present the guitar on his own terms, with “polished indie” CD's and “intellectual, international” repertoire. (Buffalo News, thisisclassicalguitar.com).
Beirs graduated from Peabody Conservatory under the tutelage of Julian Gray, where he received a Master's and Graduate Performance diploma. While at Peabody, he also spent a semester abroad studying with Roland Dyens at the Conservatoire of Paris, and in 2009, upon his return to Baltimore, he joined the guitar faculty of the Peabody Preparatory, one of America's oldest pre-college music programs. In the fall of 2013, having fallen in love with the city of lights, Beirs returned to Paris, where he currently lives and works while continuing his studies with renowned pedagogue Judicael Perroy.
Ben's foundation has allowed him to excel in both concerts and competitions. Prizes include 1st at the National Guitar Workshop Competition, 1st at the Appalachian Guitarfest Competition, 1st at the UT Dallas Competition, 2nd and Audience choice award at the Schadt Concerto Competition, and 3rd prize at the JoAnn Falletta International Guitar Concerto Competition.
His most recent CD, “Fluidity” is described by Bradford Werner of thisisclassicalguitar.com as “another very solid album from Beirs.” Featuring a commission by Polish guitarist-composer Marek Pasieczny, works by Asencio, Ponce, and Tadic, it also contains a new three-movement piece written by Beirs. His previous CD, “Widening Circles,” described as “the brave new world of the classical guitar” by the Sacramento Bee, was picked up by the Naxos-distributed Azica label and re-released in August of 2013.
Believing that music is a “great kindness,” Beirs shares this philosophy in his teaching and performing. He is currently a faculty member of the American Conservatory of Paris and teaches privately. He also collaborates in France with Maud Laforest as classical guitar ensemble Duo Transatlantique and in Europe with Korean flutist Jasmine Choi. Recent appearances as a soloist or chamber musician include concerts in Washington, D.C. at the Kennedy Center; Dubai, U.A.E.; Vienna, Austria; Paris, France; and at the Philadelphia, Baltimore, Knoxville, San Jose, and New York classical guitar societies. When not performing or teaching music, Ben enjoys practicing and teaching yoga and received a 200-hour yoga teacher training in July 2014.