University of Hawaii

MMS Faculty

Ian O'Sullivan

Proclaimed by Classical Guitar as "thoughtful" and praised by The Honolulu Advertiser as "delightful," Ian O'Sullivan is a classically-trained guitarist and composer from the North Shore of O‘ahu. Well-versed in Hawaiian slack-key guitar and the ‘ukulele, in addition to the Western classical repertoire, Ian has performed at Carnegie's Weill Recital Hall, New York Guitar Society, New England Guitar Society, Hawaii Public Radio Atherton Studios, Hawaii Opera Theater, and the Orvis Auditorium at the University of Hawaii. He can also be found regularly in Honolulu at Jazzminds, Tiki's, and the Mezz 127. In 2013 Ian released his first solo album "Born and Raised," featuring his original compositions alongside music of fellow Hawaiian natives.

As a child, Ian began playing the ‘ukulele by ear. He then experimented with electric guitar in a rock band during high school years, familiarizing himself with contemporary styles of reggae, hip-hop, and jazz through tablature and recordings. In 2001, Ian entered the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa as a Marine Biology major, though it was not long after when he met Grammy Award winning artist and then UH lecturer of classical guitar Jeff Peterson who introduced Ian to the world of classical guitar. During his years at UH, Ian transformed from a nonmusic- literate garage band guitarist to being the first guitarist from Hawaii to be accepted at Yale University‚Äôs School of Music.

Ian returned to O‘ahu in 2011 accepting the lectureship in classical guitar from his alma mater. During the 2013-14 season, Ian will appear in performance at the Orvis Auditorium (March 14th), the Doris Duke Theatre, The Atherton Studios, "Pakele Live" at the Willows, and Benjamin Verder's Maui Guitar Class. Ian is a proud graduate of The Kamehameha Schools, and the recipient of the Yale Elliot Fisk Award.


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