Award-winning and acclaimed as "stunning and emotive" (Eugene Register-Guard), Cameron O’Connor enjoys a diverse career in solo, chamber, and contemporary music. Recent and upcoming highlights include solo and duo recitals throughout Japan; performing as a guest artist at the Loyola Marymount, Corvallis, Siempre la Guitarra, and Northwest Guitar Festivals; chamber music and opera appearances with Eugene Opera and musicians of the Oregon Symphony in their Classical Up Close concert series; as a chamber music soloist at the New World Symphony in Miami (for which the South Florida Classical Review noted that he was “especially effective in the quick and diabolical figures”); appearing as a guest artist and performing duos with Sharon Isbin at the Aspen Music Festival and School; performing with Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony; and appearing under the baton of Chinese composer Tan Dun in his Eastern-tinged Concerto for Six, for which the New York Times noted that “O’Connor fluttered on his guitar strings in a manner reminiscent of a pipa player’s technique.” He is furthermore a prizewinner in many international competitions, including the Frances Walton and Tokyo International Guitar Competition. O'Connor has performed in a dozen musical productions on electric guitar, banjo, and mandolin, and in early music settings on the vihuela and lute. He was for years a member in a top-40s dance band whose repertoire ranged from Journey to Beyoncé.
His playing has been featured in films, including James Franco’s Don Quixote and Scott Tennant's instructional classic Pumping Nylon, as well as featured on radio programs like Seattle's Classical 98.1 KingFM, All Classical Portland (including an hour-long solo feature), American Public Media’s Performance Today, and KPFK's Global Village. His recording of Michael Lee's Unmasked (written for O'Connor) was chosen for Ablaze Record's Millenial Masters, distributed by Naxos.
As a composer, O'Connor won the 2019 Keene State College Call for Scores, the "Outstanding Winner" 2nd prize at the Changsha International Guitar Festival in China, and is a finalist in the 2nd Portugal International Guitar Composition Competition (of whose jury Leo Brouwer is a member). The Guitar Foundation of America (GFA) recently commissioned O'Connor to contribute an arrangement to their Spotlight series, which seeks to further diversify the guitar repertoire; the resulting work, Samuel Coleridge-Taylor's Impromptu II, is now published by Les Productions d'Oz in Quebec. His writing has also appeared in the pages of the GFA's publication, Soundboard.
O’Connor was a full scholarship recipient at CSU Northridge, where he studied guitar with Ron Borczon and lute with Ronald Purcell; The Juilliard School in New York City, where he studied with Sharon Isbin; and at the USC Thornton School of Music as a guitarist under William Kanengiser, while pursuing an emphasis in music theory under Bob Moore. His research into the "absolute music" of Richard Wagner yielded several arrangements of the composer's music for guitar, now published through LACG Editions. Upon receiving his degree, the Thornton School recognized him as the Outstanding Doctoral Graduate of his class. He has served on the faculty of Oregon State University since 2017, and his compositions and arrangements can be found through LACG Editions (lacg.net).