|Roland Dyens (b. 1955)
Born on October 19, 1955, French interpreter, composer, arranger and improviser Roland Dyens began guitar studies at the age of nine. Four years later he became a student of Spanish Master guitarist Alberto Ponce and, in 1976, was awarded the Licence de Concert de l’École Normale de Musique de Paris.
While learning his instrument, Roland Dyens also studied composition with the renowned teacher, composer and conductor Désiré Dondeyne under whose guidance he was awarded the First Prize in Harmony, Counterpoint and Analysis.
Among the most distinguished awards obtained during the early years of his career, Roland Dyens received the Special Prize at the International Competition Città di Alessandria (Italy) and the Grand Prix du Disque de l’Académie Charles-Cros, both in honor of the major Brasilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos. At the age of 25 he became a laureate of the Yehudi Menuhin Foundation. Eight years after this, he was recognized as one of the “Best Living Guitarists” in all styles by the French magazine Guitarist. On the 30th of September 2006, he was awarded the “Chitarra d’Oro 2006” for his body of compositions by the Presidency of the Città di Alessandria International Competition. The following year, in 2007, he was honoured by the Guitar Foundation of America (GFA), which chose him to compose the set piece for its prestigious annual competition, held in Los Angeles. More than 50 guitarists presented «Anyway» and its central improvisation. (It’s noteworthy that two students of Roland Dyens, Jérémy Jouve and Thomas Viloteau, won the highly coveted first prize at the GFA competition in 2003 and 2006 respectively.) In October 2007, during his autumn tour of North America, Roland Dyens’ October 6th recital in Winnipeg earned five stars from the Winnipeg Free Press. It was only the second time that the daily paper, established in 1872, had awarded such high praise. On the 27th of July 2008, his works are again recognized in Italy with the Premio per la Composizione at the 2nd International Festival of Città di Fiuggi, near Rome. A few months later, he was privileged to be asked to compose the music and conduct the ensemble which will be performing in order to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the prestigious Guitar Ensemble Association of Japan. “Soleils levants” was finally premiered on November 9th 2008 in Nakano Zero Main Hall of Tokyo.
On the 21st of January 2010, Roland Dyens is honored with the privilege of being the only classical guitarist invited to participate to an homage to the great Django Reinhardt, in a concert that will be given at the legendary Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris.
In July, 2011, his recital at the International Córdoba Guitar Festival received the highest accolade of the coveted "Five Stars" from the Spanish Press, titling its review "Roland Dyens, El Mago de la guitarra" (the Wizzard of guitar).
Today, among living composers, Roland Dyens is ranked highest in the "Top 100" list of most recorded original works for the guitar throughout the world. Furthermore, 3 of his works are officially part of this ranking, according to the remarkable eponymouswork of the Canadian musicologist Enrique Robichaud, published in 2013.