Jonathan Lee Smith


Award-winning guitarist Jonathan Smith continues to earn recognition as a superior artist though his versatile performance skills, teaching style, and collaborations.

Jonathan has received awards in a number of competitions including 1st place “James Stroud All-Ohio Guitar Competition 2014;” 1st Prize “Southern Guitar Festival 2014, chamber division, “3rd Prizes in both the Classical and Blues/Rock categories of the “Wilson Center Guitar Festival and Competition of 2013,” and highly commended for the Stetson University Concerto Competition in 2010.

Though trained as a classical guitarist, Jonathan is equally at home with jazz, pop, rock and fusion styles. He performs both solo and collaborative works, with one, in particular, being a flute and guitar ensemble, GS Duo.  With flutist Angela Galestro, the award-winning duo has delighted audiences across the entire United States and in concert as far away as Argentina and Italy.  Other collaborations include Shenandoah Conservatory’s Edge Ensemble, Shenandoah Summer Music Theater, Carone-Smith Duo and Florida hit rock band, Run Rhino.  Jonathan’s contribution to new music with Shenandoah Conservatory’s Edge Ensemble includes performances of works by and for David Lang, Oscar Bettison, Jonathan Newman, and David T. Little.  Jonathan has featured his versatility, notably with Shenandoah Summer Music Theater, on many fretted instruments like banjo, mandolin and steel string guitar.  The production include Little Shop of Horrors, Rent, Oklahoma, Hairspray, and Cabaret.  Run Rhino, which features  Jonathan’s creative electric guitar work, has opened for “Hippiefest” (3 years in a row) in Daytona Beach, FL opening for Lifehouse; and has opened for other national acts such as Foghat, Jefferson Starship, and Molly Hatchet.

Teaching music and developing his own pedagogical methods is at the forefront of Jonathan’s career.  He manages and teaches at Glaize Avenue Studios which holds a network of students well on their way to making music.  Through a foundation of classical studies mixed with an upbringing in popular culture,  Jonathan’s teachings methods cater to all ages and learning styles.  Jonathan regularly teaches classical guitar, fingerstyle guitar, electric guitar, electric bass, mandolin, banjo, ukulele, trumpet, and beginning piano.  Further, the genre focus is specific to the student’s strengths, background, and ambitions.  Being a well-adverse teacher would not come without Jonathan’s teachers and mentors.  These pedagogues include Dr. Stephen Robinson, Stephen Aron, and Julian Gray, alongside selective participation in master classes for renowned artists such as Manuel Barrueco, Roland Dyens, Eliot Fisk and Lorenzo Micheli.

Jonathan received a Master of Music degree fromt he University of Akron under the tutelage of Stephen Aron and a Bachelor of Music from Stetson University while studying with Dr. Stephen Robinson.  Jonathan completed his Doctor of Musical Arts in Guitar Performance degree at Shenandoah Conservatory under Professor Julian Gray and remains active as a teacher, performer, arranger and recording artist.

Hear the Galestro-Smith Duo perform! 


His guitar: Brazilian rosewood cedar/cedar double top with flamed walnut rosette and Macassar ebony bindings.