The Denison University Department of Music is proud to again host the longest continually running Jazz Guitar Festival in the United States. Founded by Denison Department of Music’s retired faculty member Tom Carroll, the festival has promoted the artistry and diversity of jazz guitar playing and players since 1997. Carroll celebrates his last year as director by bringing back special guests Gene Bertoncini, Frank Vignola and Bob Thompson.

The opening concert on Friday, October 8, 7:00 pm features the Tom Carroll Quartet with Bob Thompson and the Brett Burleson Trio. Bob Thompson is the house pianist and featured artist on the NPR show Mountain Stage.

The Saturday, October 9, 7:30 pm concert showcases world-renowned jazz guitarists Gene Bertoncini, Frank Vignola and Vinny Raniolo.

On Saturday afternoon, the following workshops will be held in the Eisner tent. These are free and open to the public, no ticket required.

  • Hayes Griffin ‘10, 1 p.m., “Western Swing and Jazz”
  • Stan Smith, 2 p.m., “Modern Guitar Trio Playing”
  • Chris Buzzelli, 3 p.m., “Keeping the Melody in Mind”
  • Frank Vignola, 4 p.m., Concert preview with Frank Vignola and Vinny Raniolo

Tom Carroll will retire from organizing the festival after this year with Denison Coordinator of Guitar Studies, Brett Burleson, continuing the tradition into the future.

The concerts are in Sharon Martin Hall in the Eisner Center and are open to Denison Students, Faculty and Staff. Masks are required. Vaccinated family members of Denison students, faculty and staff may attend by contacting the Eisner Center Box Office in advance at or 740-587-6544.

September 30, 2021