Founded in 1974 by former Musical Director and guitar teacher-extraordinaire Dr. John Casey, Guitarstrophe! has become the world benchmark for both large guitar ensembles, and musical youth groups alike. Guitarstrophe! aims to bring together eager young guitarists with the common goal of performing challenging repertoire to an exceptional standard.
Guitarstrophe! has performed both nationally, including in Sydney and Darwin, and internationally - throughout the UK, Germany and New Zealand. The ensemble has participated in the acclaimed Darwin International Guitar Festival, performing in seven consecutive festivals. The group enjoys collaborating with other musicians and composers and performs locally at least twice per year.
Upon the retirement of Dr John Casey in 2010, long-time Guitarstrophite Caroline Binsted was appointed the new Musical Director. Following the footsteps of Dr. Casey she is also a qualified classical guitar teacher, working across many schools in the Perth region. In early 2021 a group of older Guitarstrophites started sharing the conducting role with Caroline. With a combined 78 years of Guitarstrophe! experience between them, their current team of conductors are Caroline Binsted, Katy Hadfield, Hayden Emery and Adrian Phillips.
”…Western Australian Combined Schools' Guitar Ensemble [now Guitarstrophe!] - a formidable team of young players whose performances invariably weaken my long held belief that the guitar orchestra is merely an educational tool”.
Paul Fowles - International Guitar Magazine, Dec. 1997
“…in my experience it is one of the finest ensembles of young players I have heard anywhere…”
Carlos Bonell - Professor of Classical Guitar, Royal College of Music, London
“…they [Guitarstrophe!] have now become the benchmark of excellence of such groups throughout Australia…”
Adrian Walter - Director of Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts (2012-2020), Director of the Darwin International Guitar Festival (1993-2007)