Mark Small, classical guitarist, composer, and music journalist, has spent the majority of his life in New England. He has composed classical, jazz, pop, and sacred music for chorus, wind ensemble, orchestra, piano, and guitar. He holds bachelor's and master's degrees in classical guitar performance from New England Conservatory and California State University, Fullerton. He also studied guitar and composition at Berklee College of Music, and served for 26 years as editor of Berklee today magazine until his retirement in 2018. An active music journalist, Mark has written for Guitar Player, DownBeat, Acoustic Guitar, Soundboard, Classical Guitar, and other music publications.
One half of the Small-Torres Guitar Duo for 18 years, Mark and Robert Torres recorded six CDs of sacred and classical guitar music that received three nominations for Pearl Awards. The Small-Torres duo performed throughout America on television and radio and played works they arranged and composed for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir on three international live broadcasts of Music and the Spoken Word.
Fast Falls the Eventide, was another duo recording Mark made with fellow guitarist Peter Clemente, various featured artists (including two orchestrated pieces) for the Joy Spring Records label in 2006. It received radio airplay nationwide and was nominated for two Pearl Awards. Mark’s first solo album, Scenes, was released in 2011, and spotlights his original compositions and arrangements for solo guitar.
Mark wrote an arrangement of Pat Metheny’s “Letter from Home” for the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet’s album Guitar Heroes. The disc won a Grammy Award in 2005 for "best classical crossover album.” The group also performed the arrangement on the LAGQ Live DVD, released by Mel Bay.
Mark’s solo guitar piece “Mississippi Revisited” won second place in the VIII International Composition Competition of the Corfu Festival held in Corfu, Greece, August 2005. His Allegretto, Elegy, and Passacaglia received honorable mention in the 2017 Boston GuitarFest composition competition. Various guitarists are playing Mark’s duo and solo pieces.
Since leaving Berklee, Mark immersed himself in composing, arranging, and guitar practice full time. Since 2019, he has completed an orchestral work featuring guitar titled Unforeseen Destinations, numerous solo guitar pieces, and a few choral works. To hear unreleased tracks and a few cuts from early albums, visit Soundcloud and search under the artist name “marksmall6.”