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Prof. Thomas Offermann teaches at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater [University of Music and Drama] in Rostock, Germany.
Offermann began to play the guitar at the age of seven and
is one of todays most respected Guitarists and Guitar pedagogues.
Thomas graduated from the Musikhochschulen of Aachen, Cologne/Germany
(Classes Tadashi Sasaki, Hubert Käppel) „with distinction"
and was awarded the „Solistendiplom der Musikakademie
Basel"/Switzerland (Class Oscar Ghiglia). Amongst his teachers
were also artists such as the members of the AMADEUS- String
Quartett, Manuel Barrueco, Leo Brouwer, David Russell, Karl Scheit
and John Williams. He was also awarded several scholarships by the
DAAD and he was Finalist and prizewinner at several international
guitar competitions (International Scandinavian Guitar Competition,
Finland, Certamen International „Andres Segovia“ und
Certamen International „Francisco Tárrega“,
Since 1984 Thomas has performed as a soloist, with orchestras, as a chamber musician and together with the DUO SONARE , one of the outstanding guitar ensembles active today in more than 40 countries worldwide including the most important guitar festivals, such as Cordoba, Esztergom, Los Angeles, Mettmann, Moskau, Wien, Mikulov, Kutna Hora, Nishnij Nowgorod, Lublin, Gdansk, Vina del Mar, Tychy, Bath, Birkenhead, Bratislava, St. Paul Trois Chateaux, Gran Canaria, Ourense, Santo Tirso, Gargnano etc.
Numerous Radio- and TV- productions as well as 8 CD - productions with the DUO SONARE all of which have won great acclaim from both critics and public alike, witness the outstanding quality of his work as well as concerts with friends as Oscar Ghiglia or Pavel Steidl or Masterclasses together with the Jazz Guitarist Uwe Kropinski. Together with the Duo Sonare Thomas was the first to open the repertoire of the Classical Guitar to music by composers such as Chick Corea, Frank Zappa or Mike Oldflield. Chick Corea wrote enthusiastically about their playing of his pieces with „so much feeling and beauty“.
Alongside his activities as a performing artist Thomas Offermann has developed a growing reputation as a teacher, both in Germany and abroad. His sensitive and meticulous approach, together with an extraordinary capacity for motivation, have made him a popular and much appreciated guitar trainer among students of all levels and backgrounds.
His researches on the Wholistic Guitar Technique made him an highly respected advisor in the Guitar world, lectures on this topic brought him invitations to important Guitar Festivals (Extracts from lectures). Already several generations of guitar students from all over the world have profited from his unique musicality, enthusiasm and didactic skills.
Benjamin Verderys "Ellis Island" for 12 Guitars at Forum Gitarre Vienna 2003
He regards his work to be essentially the training of young musicians under optimal artistic guidance so that they may develope artistic personalities that can prevail in today’s musical world.
His teaching methods are quite original and unique: the atmosphere in his lessons is open-minded, creative and concentrated at the same time. Thomas approaches music and technique in a way that everybody can easily understand, through precise, effective analysis and creative use of metaphor. He succeeds in awaking more consciousness in the student’s playing and helps him to overcome anxiety. He sets very high standards for his students yet always providing the means to accomplish them. For Thomas Offermann music is artistic expression and not the mindless repetition of mechanically learned exercises.
Mrs. Danielle Ribouillault wrote in "Les Cahiers de la Guitare" after visiting his masterclass:
“As I enter the class, he explaines how to use the notes to revive a phrase... and then you can hear how the phrase flourishes and starts to live. He orientates the student to a generous Rubato that lets the melody vibrate. He, who had played with such a musicality and mastery, knows how to transmit his live-giving esprit… A lot of students attended his class: clearly because something strong happens with him during his passionate transmission of music, something essential and more intense than otherwise.”
As Cahirman of the Guitar Dept. Prof. Thomas Offermann currently directs one of Germany´s most progressive guitar classes at the „Hochschule für Musik und Theater" [University of Music and Drama] in Rostock.
Since its establishment in 1998 his guitar class in Rostock has attracted students from all over the world. He enables his students to gain experience at highly acclaimed occasions: there is an annual concert of his class at the famous Guitar Concert Series in Bonn/Germany as well as in Berlin, TV programmes with his students, live radio concerts, concerts with the Norddeutsche Philharmonie – for instance in summer 2003 with Rodrigos Concierto de Aranjuez.
Thomas Offermann has also been a guest teacher at some of the world´s most respected music colleges, including Bremen, École Normale Superieure in Paris (2006), Yale (2006), Eastman, Manhattan (2006), as well as in Szczecin, Nishni Nowgorod, Minsk, Saigon and Hanoi. He has given masterclasses at many internationally established guitar festivals, such as Vienna (2006), Belgrade, Esztergom (Hungary), Bath (England), Liechtenstein, Gargnano (Italy), Mikulov (Czech Republic, 2006), Burgos (Spain), Saint Paul (France), as well as in Poland, Bangkok, Kathmandu, Singapore, Vietnam and India, not to forget DUO SONARES highly successful annual masterclass in Heek (Germany) and many other classes elsewhere in Germany.
Often Thomas Offermann is asked to be a member of national and international Guitar competitions.