Jacob Cordover, soloist
Australian classical guitarist Jacob Cordover has enjoyed a varied and extensive international career as a concert and recording artist based out of his home in Spain. With the interruptions in international travel due to COVID-19, combined with limits on audience sizes, Mr. Cordover took the opportunity to move to the countryside of Catalonia where he spent the pandemic focusing more on recording projects, with live, in-person concerts where possible.
Now as the world has reopened, he has merged these worlds by heading back on the road for live concerts and still dedicating time to recording and other musical projects. His “seductive performance … delicate tone and sensitive interpretations … consummate artistry and dazzling technique … demonstrated how much poetry and feeling can be obtained from the guitar in the hands of master musicians such as Jacob Cordover”.
Highlights from his career include the release of 8 CDs (4 as a soloist and 4 in duo, including 2 live recordings for the Association of Catalan Composers) as well as performances in festivals and concert series in over a dozen countries across 4 continents. Equally happy performing as a soloist, in small chamber ensembles, or in front of an orchestra, Mr. Cordover has performed in large concerts halls such as Barcelona’s l’Auditorí, Beijing’s Centennial Hall and the Cultural Centre of the Philippines’ Main Theatre, as well as more intimate venues such as the Rix Centre in Bamfield, Canada; Raynham House’s Ballroom in England’s Norfolk; and at Montsalvat, in Melbourne, Australia.
Comfortable performing a wide range of musical styles, Mr. Cordover actively programs music from the Baroque to contemporary; audiences are as familiar seeing him give world premieres as performing forgotten 19th century gems on period instruments as a member of the Nova Vita Ensemble - a group comprised of two guitars, cello and violin, whose aim is to bring new life into forgotten gems from the 18th and 19th century, performed on period instruments. Critics have equally praised his performances of J.S. Bach and William Walton, saying “His interpretation of the Bach suite [BWV 997] is one of the finest I have heard to date with superb phrasing and total mastery of the technicalities involved in playing this difficult composition” (Classical Guitar Magazine) and “This is simply the finest performance of Walton’s Bagatelles [5 Bagatelles for solo guitar] I’ve encountered. I and V crackle with energy, and he realizes perfectly the range of moods and colours in this modern masterpiece.” (American Record Guide).
His interest in contemporary music, coupled with a strong belief that classical music should not be static but rather forward-looking, has led Mr. Cordover to collaborate with numerous composers from Australia, Canada, Norway, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the USA. Mr. Cordover has premiered numerous works for solo guitar as well as a variety of chamber music combinations, including: the world premiere of a new arrangement of Enrique Granados’ Valses Poéticos by Melani Mestre with the Jove Orquestra Filharmonica de Catalunya, the North American and Asian premieres of Leo Brouwer's Baladas del Decameron Negro for guitar and string quartet and the world premiere of Sepharad – a piece for prepared guitar and flute by Catalan composer Carles Guinovart - based on an old Sephardic melody and Jewish text as well as the fugal subject of J.S. Bach’s Fugue no 14 in F# minor.
Mr. Cordover performs on several guitars: 2006 Greg Smallman and Sons guitar, Elias Bonnet Monné (2015), Elias Bonnet Monné (2018), José Ramirez P.C. (1965), and the Famiglia Vinaccia (1915).
Mr. Cordvoer is a Knobloch Artist and exclusively Knobloch Strings.
What the Press Says:
"He has it all—technique, musicianship, inventive programming ... Even if you already have these pieces in other performances, Cordover’s have such a distinct and attractive personality that it will be worth finding."
- American Record Guide (Nov/Dec 2016)
"Cordover is masterful in bringing out all the flavours here ... Cordover displays his broad musical interests on this album and the integrity with which he approaches each diverse piece is a feature. So there is something very personal in his playing. One understands his commitment to each writer’s musical intent."
- Mandy Stefanakis, Music Trust (April 1, 2016)
"His technique is flawless, his expression tasteful and always interesting and moving. This is simply the finest performance of Walton's Bagatelles I've encountered"
- American Record Guide, Jan/Feb 2014
"His interpretation of the Bach suite is one of the finest I have heard to date with superb phrasing and total mastery of the technicalities involved in playing this difficult composition."
- Classical Guitar Magazine, January 2014
"Throughout it is obvious that Cordover has considered every nuance and phrase in the chosen programme. It would be difficult to imagine finer musical performances … There is nothing superficial about the playing on this disc; Cordover plays with total assurance and an understanding of the demands of the programme; with each new track he brings colour and clarity to the music which often lacking in other performances . This is a recording to savour and one I can thoroughly recommend."
- Classical Guitar Magazine, January 2014
"His performances can stand comparison with the best ... The recording is nearly a decade old, but even then Cordover displayed the highest levels of musicianship. It is a treasure to hear."
- American Record Guide, July/Aug 2014
"Thank you for playing my piece with such elegance and sensitivity and colouring it in ways I could never have imagined."
- Ross Edwards, composer (September 2013)
"consummate artistry, dazing technique ... aficionados rejoiced in the return of Cordover”
- Adelaide Advertiser, Australia, September 2010
“[This performance] demonstrated how much poetry and feeling can be obtained from the guitar in the hands of master musicians such as Jacob Cordover ... superbly played” - The Mercury, Australia, April 2009
“A seductive performance presented by Australian guitarist Jacob Cordover, whose delicate tone and sensitive interpretations invited my ears to experience the technical strength and accuracy of his playing;”
- John Davis CEO, Australian Music Centre April, 2008
“…a complete joy to listen to throughout, Cordover managing to get to the very soul of this striking and brilliant music.”
- Classical Guitar Magazine (UK), March 2007
“Cordover’s playing is extremely fluid; there’s no question about his technical abilities.”
- Raymond Tuttle, Classical Net, 2006
“Jacob Cordover…impresses with his intuitive musicianship and impeccable technique.”
- Leicester Mercury, October, 2005