The highly acclaimed British born classical guitarist Alison Smith has been described as "one of the most exciting and lyrical guitarists to emerge in recent years." She delights audiences with her fluid technique and expressive playing, performing nationwide and in Europe.
In 1995 Alison graduated with honours from Trinity College of Music, London. She was awarded the Grace Wylie Thesis Prize, a college scholarship and a scholarship from the Mary Datchelor Trust to enable her to pursue her Post-Graduate studies. She studied the Guitar with Gilbert Biberian and Nicola Hall and Piano with Raymond Banning. During her time at college Alison also performed on the violin. In July 1997 she was awarded a Distinction in the Post-Graduate Performance Certificate.
From 2002-2008 Alison taught guitar and coached chamber music at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (formerly Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama) and lectured on Techniques of Teaching for the B Mus Course. She has given performances and talks as a guest artist at Plymouth University and has recently been appointed as the University Classical Guitar tutor for the BA Hons music course.
Alison has been supported in her playing career with awards from The Tillet Trust and Oppenheim John-Downes Memorial Trust. Engagements include the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, The Norfolk Symphony Orchestra’s Thirty Year Anniversary Celebration, St Martin in the Fields, St James’ Piccadilly, The Bolivar Hall, The Michael Tippett Centre, Queens Theatre, Barnstaple, Dartington, Exeter Cathedral, Edward King House at Lincoln Cathedral, The University of Dundee, Chateau le Risdoux in the Ardennes, St Martin Kirche, Nortorf, Germany, Kedleston Hall and Saltram House for The National Trust and Plymouth Museum and Art Gallery International Concert Series. Alison was guest soloist at the Charles May Memorial Concert, Plymouth. She has broadcast on BBC Radio Devon and has also given a live performance on the Iain Anderson Show, BBC Scotland.
Alison has performed at numerous classical guitar festivals including the Prussia Cove Guitar Seminar and The Garcia Biberian International Summer School. Most recently she played at The 2011 Exeter Guitar Summer School, The Ards International Guitar Festival, Belfast and was guest soloist at The West Lothian Guitarfest. Alison has played at eight International Guitar Festivals of Great Britain where she received great critical acclaim.
Alison has been involved in outreach work whilst teaching at The Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, including giving workshops and advising on teaching the guitar on the Isle of Lewis. She has directed a workshop as part of Guitarfest at the University of Strathclyde and was a tutor at The Big Guitar Weekend at the RSAMD 2007 and 2008. She directed with Steve Gordon a Guitar Ensemble Weekend in Exeter in 2009. Alison is also a teacher of the colourstring method and is an advisor and examiner for colourstring centres in London and Dublin.