Welcome to the CU Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program at the University of Colorado Boulder College of Music!

The Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program aims to be an agorà, a public space for scholars and guitarists, for students and music lovers—a place where different people and cultures meet to share ideas and foster the arts.

Through its different initiatives, its numerous collaborations with the community and its strong chamber music component, the program's mission is to encourage its students to interact with an international environment and to expose them to the most refined music-making. Students are stimulated to broaden their cultural and human horizons and to always look for different occasions in which to confront and meet new musicians. In so doing, they build their unique artistic path. 

Mike and Mikhy Ritter and the Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program
In October 2014, CU Boulder alumni Michael and Michele Ritter made a trailblazing gift to the classical-guitar program that, combined with a commitment from the Office of the Chancellor, endowed and renamed it as The Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program. "The generosity of Mikhy and Mike is nurturing our guitar students’ dreams, it strengthens their desire to explore and to discover, and encourages their search for a unique voice in the musical world," says Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program director Nicolò Spera.

nicolo speraNicolò Spera

Italian guitarist Nicolò Spera brings to his teaching and performing a unique synthesis of European and American traditions. Spera is one of the few guitarists in the world to perform on both six-string and ten-string guitars, as well as on theorbo. His wide-ranging repertoire includes the extraordinary music of the Franco-Andalusian composer Maurice Ohana. He has given lecture-recitals on the music of Ohana at different institutions and festivals, including the Mediterranean Guitar Festival, Arizona State University, Conservatorio della Svizzera Italiana, Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi in Milan, San Francisco Conservatory and the University of Surrey for the launch of the International Guitar Research Centre. His CD of Ohana’s complete works for solo guitar (Soundset Recordings), presenting the world première recording of Estelas, was awarded the 5-stars “Disco del mese” review by Seicorde, the major Italian classical guitar magazine. More


Matteo Mela and Lorenzo Micheli—better known worldwide as SoloDuo—are permanent visiting artists as part of the Ritter Family Classical Guitar Program.

The duo spends up to two weeks every semester in Boulder, working with individuals and ensembles on the graduate and undergraduate levels, and performing with students and faculty.

Both SoloDuo’s residency and the CU Guitar Festival responds to our program vision and its efforts to bring the finest classical guitarists in the world to the University and Boulder communities to expose young people, in a very direct way, to great artistry and music making. Every semester, different guest artists are invited to perform and teach at CU-Boulder. In the last few years, lutenists such as Paul O’Dette and Nigel North, and guitarists such as the Assad Brothers, Roland Dyens and Paco Peña visited our guitar program. More