Wilson Center Competitor's Concert

This year, we continue our tradition of hosting special performance by a selection of award-winning performers who are participating in the prestigious Wilson Center Guitar Competition. We're fortunate to once again have FOUR great guitarists on the roster: Minh Nguyen, Samuel Hines, Frances Karim Chiroque, and Jesus Serrano. Each will be bringing their A-game with competition-honed repertoire.


Minh Nguyen was born in Ha Noi, Viet Nam. He has been living in US since he was 20. He has received his music degrees from the University of Puget Sound, the University of Wisconsin/ Milwaukee, and the University of Southern California. He has been a top prize winner in several guitar competitions, including the first prize at the Sierra Nevada Guitar Festival. Minh Nguyen has been performing concerts in Vietnam and Us, and currently he is living in Westminster, California. This is his comeback to Madison, after 5 years.
Frances Karim Chiroque has completed a Masters Degree in Music from Conservatory of Puerto Rico with a major focus in Classical Guitar, making her the first puertorican female obtaining this diploma from this recognized institution.

She has studied with world renown musicians such as Iván Rijos and Manuel Barrueco. Awarded with a Berklee Schorlarship and selected for Wilson Center Guitar Competition as semifinalist, Frances dedicates her love and commitment to represent the classical guitar community from Puerto Rico. She has performed in different countries such as Perú, Colombia, Dominican Republic, and many parts of United States including Texas, New York, Georgia, Florida and Puerto Rico.

Currently, Ms. Chiroque has been selected for a donation of a $15,000 value guitar thanks to a joined partnership with Connor Guitars and Augustine Strings family, in efforts to give hope in her musical career after Hurricane Maria(2017) in Puerto Rico. Most recently, she has also partnered as a Sales Representative with Frank Cruz Classical Guitars , located in Chicago, IL . Together, they offer quality concert guitars for sale and rentals.
Praised for, “Virtuosity and deep musical interpretation”, Samuel Hines is an award-winning guitarist from Southern California. His passion for guitar is clearly seen by those who
experience his music. His mentor and teacher Cuban virtuoso, Rene Izquierdo has described his pupil as, “A profound musician, Samuel Hines has matured to become a remarkable guitarist. His
artistry will touch many!”
Recent invitations include the International Guitar Series, in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and as a guest artist at festivals in California, Florida, North Carolina, and Wisconsin. Besides a busy performance schedule, Hines has won prizes in over 30 competitions, with recent first prizes including the 2019 Houston Guitar Festival, the 2019 New Orleans International Guitar
Festival, the 2019 Appalachian Guitarfest, the 2017 Florida Guitar Festival, the 2017 East Carolina University Guitar Festival, and the 2015 Sierra Nevada International Guitar Festival, among others. Hines was also a competitor at the prestigious Parkening International Guitar Competition, selected as one of 15 competitors from around the world for participation at the 2012, 2015 and 2019 editions.
His educational background includes a Bachelor of Music from Vanguard University of Southern California with Michael Nigro, a Master of Music at University of the Wisconsin-Milwaukee with René Izquierdo and is pursuing his Doctor of Musical Arts with Maja
Radovonlija where he is the teaching assistant.
Samuel Hines plays a 2014 Antonio Marin Montero on Augustine Regal Blue Strings
Mexican Guitar Virtuoso Jesus Serrano described as the ‘Devil of the Guitar’ stands out for his powerful and refined performance. A winner of multiple prizes, Jesus Serrano has won over 50 prizes in America and Europe including more than two dozen 1st prizes in international competitions, including the 2015 Boston GuitarFest, the 2016 Florida Guitar Festival and the 2017 Festival et Compétition Internationale de Guitare Classique de Montréal.

Composers have written and dedicated music to him to show his extensive palette of technical abilities as well as his unique personality.His eclectic and energetic repertoire is focused on the interaction between speed and sensibility, and his artistic activity has led to him performing extensively throughout America and Europe. Jesus is also often invited to conduct Lectures and Workshops at international guitar festivals as well as being part of the jury in International Competitions.