Gareth Koch

BIOGRAPHY



Gareth Koch was born in Milan in 1962 and began learning flamenco guitar at age twelve in Andalucia, Spain. At age thirteen he also studied clarinet at the Mozartueum in Salzburg. A few years later in Australia, he began a tumultuous affair with rock and roll - an encounter from which he has never fully recovered. Gareth graduated from The Sydney Conservatorium of Music in 1987 and subsequently won scholarships to complete post-graduate study in classical guitar at The Royal Madrid Conservatorium and the Vienna Academy of Music and Dramatic Art.

During a decade in Europe Gareth performed the solo repertoire extensively and made his recording debut. It was during this time he premiered his controversial transcription of Carl Orff's Carmina Burana for solo guitar. He collaborated with orchestras, contemporary ensembles, theatres and flamenco dance companies. He also published many arrangements and compositions with the publishing house Doblinger of Vienna. On reviewing his recording debut in Europe, Vienna's Wiener Zeitung commented: Koch's playing is phenomenal. Gareth later completed a PhD thesis which explored the nature of creativity and the workings of the unconscious mind during the act of creation.

Gareth has appeared at many festivals including the Hong Kong Arts Festival, Brisbane Festival, Darwin International Guitar Festival, Iserlohn (Germany) International Guitar Festival and the World Expo in Japan. He has performed throught the USA, Austria, Germany, Spain, Italy, Serbia, Croatia, Macedonia, Latvia, Estonia, Japan, Hong Kong, Thailand, Vietnam and Australia. A CD review by Britain's Classical Guitar Magazine of his ABC Classics release, The Fragrance of Paradise, stated: This is possibly the best CD I have ever reviewed. The CD comprises entirely original compositions by Gareth based on French medieval (trouvere) sources.

Gareth has released five solo albums for ABC Classics in Australia, and three collaborative albums with Saffire - The Australian Guitar Quartet. In 2003 Saffire won an ARIA for Best Classical Album.

In 2010 Gareth took up a position as Lecturer in Classical Guitar at the Conservatorium of Music within the University of Tasmania. He is a commited and enthusiastic teacher whose studio comprises beginner through to post-graduate students

© Bissotto