David Patterson
Trio Photo: Jeffrey Burke

Trio2Photo: Josh Touster

• New World Guitar Trio "Exiled"
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• New World Guitar Trio "New World Guitar Trio"
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“One of the finest guitar ensembles around.”


“A remarkably mature ensemble....sensitive musicianship... Best of all, the NWGT cultivates new repertoire, including compositions commissioned by the group and Patterson’s ingenious transcriptions of solo piano, chamber and orchestral works.”

“Indeed, what’s remarkable about this debut is how fluidly and fluently the New World Guitar Trio makes this program seem idiomatic to three guitars, while providing a refreshing new perspective on the music itself.”

The New World Guitar Trio was an eclectic, contemporary ensemble founded by David Patterson in 1988. After its inception, the Trio quickly gained notoriety for its highly-charged and refined performances which often defied the standard conceptions of the classical guitar repertoire. As the group’s musical director and arranger, Mr. Patterson earned exceptional praise for his innovative programming and his "ingenious transcriptions of solo piano, chamber, and orchestra works" (Guitar Player magazine). The ensemble had no first, second or third guitarists, but rather, a fluid exchange of leading and supporting roles, tailored to each player’s style. This flexibility allowed for individual freedom of expression, resulting in the exceptional dynamism that characterized the Trio’s acclaimed performances.

The group performed worldwide in diverse venues including: Boston’s Jordan Hall, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), Taipei’s National Theater, Rio de Janeiro, Lincoln Center, the Kathryn Bache Miller Theater at Columbia University, Five Spot jazz club, CBGB's gallery, and the 92nd Street Y in New York. The Trio frequently appeared on national radio as part of the NPR series "Performance Today" and "All Things Considered", "Around New York" (WNYC), and the Young Artist Showcase on WQXR. They also appeared on television and radio throughout Asia and South America.

In addition to performing original arrangements, the New World Guitar Trio had a history of commissioning new works. In 1996, the group premiered Oceana under the direction of Helmuth Rilling, a commission from Osvaldo Golijov by the Oregon Bach Festival and written for vocalist Lucianna Souza and the Trio. Other premieres included Dana Brayton’s The Preacher (2000), David Leisner’s Roaming (1994), Claudio Ragazzi’s Exiled in Buenos Aires (1997), Fernando Brandão’s Procissão (1999), and Chiel Meijering’s Who’s Hot and Who’s Not, premiered in 1997 with the Boston Modern Orchestra Project. The ensemble also received high praise for its recordings: "Indeed, what’s remarkable...is how fluidly and fluently the New World Guitar Trio makes this program seem idiomatic to three guitars, while providing a refreshing new perspective on the music itself" (Audio Magazine on the Trio’s debut release in 1995). Their 2000 CD release, Exiled, also offers a unique collection of works, with the Trio’s arrangements of works by Charles Ives, George Gershwin, and Carlos Paredes as well as commissions from Brandão, Leisner, and Ragazzi.

Between 1988 and 1997, the members of the Trio included David Patterson, Thomas Noren, and Dean Harada. Harada left the group and was replaced by Thomas Rhode in the summer of 1997. After 15 years of success, the Trio members disbanded in 2003 to pursue individual projects.


The program on this CD represents what we would have played on any given concert at that time.  The Debussy and Beethoven arrangements were among several works we considered to be centerpieces of our live performances and though the music we performed at the time was heavily weighted in the classical realm, we had already started to seek out music which represented broader tastes and perhaps a more contemporary feel.  The sharply contrasting music of the Dutch composer Chiel Meijering fulfilled the desire of the group to expand our repertoire in this direction.  It was enormously satisfying to play because it not only drew inspiration from rock and fusion but had an irreverent and rebellious nature we very well related to.


As we began to explore various ideas in programming, performing and recording, we also began to work with composers on commissions for the group.  During the years between releases, we had premiered several larger scale works with orchestra including a concerto written for us by our friend Chiel Meijering and a wonderful piece by Osvaldo Golijov for orchestra, guitar trio and the Brazilian vocalist Luciana Souza.  Our live performances were changing significantly in terms of repertoire and presentation.  Programs were mixed with world music, original music commissioned by the group and contemporary classical music.  I had an idea to start including solo pieces in our shows so that each group member had an opportunity to express his personal taste and playing style.  We also began playing with amplification and for larger audiences.  By the mid-90’s the New World Guitar Trio was a very different group indeed.  We decided to name the album “Exiled” after Claudio Ragazzi’s piece “Exiled in Buenos Aires”. 

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