Colin McAllister

Colin McAllister
Classical and Electric Guitar Faculty

Colin McAllister is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. He was a 2021-2022 Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative Fellow and the 2020 recipient of the Letters, Arts, and Sciences Outstanding Teaching Award. His performances as a guitarist and conductor have been hailed as ‘sparkling….delivered superbly’ (San Francisco Chronicle), ‘ravishing’ (San Diego Union Tribune) and ‘an amazing tour de force’ (San Diego Story), and he has recorded on the Summit, Innova, Centaur, Naxos, Albany, Old King Cole, Vienna Modern Masters, Carrier and Tzadik labels. His research interests include contemporary music performance and pedagogy, musical modernism, and the apocalyptic paradigm as manifested in varying phenomena—literature, music, and art.

Colin is the guitarist and conductor for the ensemble NOISE, and a co-founder of the SoundON Festival of Modern Music, held every January in La Jolla, California. He is a member of the Hennessy 6 jazz sextet and the Trilix Jazz Trio. He is the founder and director of Through a Glass Darkly: Annual Symposium on Apocalyptica, a collaboration between UCCS, Concordia University Montréal, McGill University, and Colorado College.

A dedicated performer of contemporary repertoire, Colin has given over 100 first performances, including the U.S. premiere of works by leading European composers Chaya Czernowin, Franco Donatoni, Brian Ferneyhough, Beat Furrer, Vinko Globokar, Helmut Lachenmann and Rolf Riehm. He has performed throughout North America and Europe including the Monday Evening Concerts, New Music Miami, San Francisco sfSound, Darmstadt International Music Festival, Festival Hispanoamericano de Guitarra, Dallas Festival of Modern Music, Foro Internacional de Música Nueva Manuel Enríquez in Mexico City, PRISMS New Music, Seattle Transport Jazz, Breda Jazz Festival, Colorado College Summer Music Festival, and the Centro Mexicano para la Música y las Artes Sonoras (CMMAS). As a guest artist, he has appeared with the Colorado Springs Philharmonic, Chamber Orchestra of the Springs, San Diego Opera, San Diego Symphony, Colorado Symphony, and the La Jolla Symphony.

His publications include the Cambridge Companion to Apocalyptic Literature (2020), and the Cambridge Gloss on the Apocalypse, a translation of an eighth-century Latin commentary on the Revelation of John (Brepols, Corpus Christianorum in Translation, 2020) The Road Less Traveled (Summit Records), and Dies irae, dies illa: Music in the Apocalyptic Mode (Brill Word and Music series, forthcoming 2022).

He has two works with Productions d’OZ: The Vanguard
Guitar and Fourteenth Century Counterpoint: Music of the Chantilly Codex. The Vanguard Guitar was praised by Soundboard magazine as ‘a great success…not only a primer of modern techniques, but also a library of current performance practices’. His two guitar instructional courses: Learning to Play Guitar: Chords, Scales and Solos and Playing Guitar Like a Pro: Lead, Solo and Group Performance are produced by The Great Courses. Colin is endorsed by PRS Guitars and is an Artist Partner with Taylor Guitars.

His newest book, Music in the Apocalyptic Mode (with Lorenzo DiTommaso), will be published in early 2023 (Brill).

Colin earned both the M.A. and D.M.A. at the University of California, San Diego, where he studied guitar with Los Romeros and Stuart Fox, interpretation with Bertram Turetzky, and conducting with Harvey Sollberger and Rand Steiger. He also holds an M.A. in History from UCCS.