Mike is Professor Emeritus in the Music Department at Utah State University, and founded the guitar program at USU and was Director of Guitar Studies at USU for 39 years. In 1994, he was selected as “Professor of the Year” at Utah State University.
Mike received the ASTA (American String Teachers Association) Utah Chapter Outstanding Collegiate Educator of the Year Award in 2006. In December of 2012, Mike was selected as one of the U.S. Carnegie Professors of the Year. In that same year, he was selected as the USU Caine College of the Arts Professor of the Year, and in 2013, he was invited to be a TED speaker.
Mike is an in-demand clinician doing dozens of clinics and workshops annually for schools and various conferences. He averages over 130 performances annually as a soloist, with the group Phase II, and with the Lightwood Duo (a clarinet-guitar duo which has released six recordings). He is the author and/or co-author of 44 books. Recently, he has authored three new books (Guitar Fundamentals: Beginning, Intermediate, and Intermediate Level II) that are being used in the guitar blended-learning curriculum produced by Consonus Music. Mike also developed the curriculum and lesson plans for Consonus Music and appears on over 400 videos used with the Consonus program.
He has recorded 31 CDs and appears on hundreds of instructional videos. He has had articles published in several magazines including Acoustic Guitar, Fingerstyle, and Soundboard. and has performed with many artists including Jack Petersen, Glen Frey of The Eagles, Joe Diorio, Tommy Emmanuel, Jose Posadas, Johnny Hilland, Natalie Cole, and Alfie Boe.
– – – – Testimonials – – – –
I have hired Mike Christiansen a number of times and have always found him to be a real professional. He always comes early, delivers unbelievably high-quality guitar music, and even stays a little later (with a great attitude) when needed. His is my first class guitarist because of the great flexibility he has in song selection/style and for his unwavering commitment to excellence. Last but not least, he always comes dressed sharp as a tack and looking great! I would heartily endorse Mike to any one looking for high-nend guitar talent.
Booking Agent, Salt Lake City, Utah
“We’ve worked with Mike for several years and it’s always a pleasure. Not only is he an incredibly talented musician and teacher, spending time with him always leaves you with a smile on your face. Mike is a class act the whole way and we always look forward to spending time with him in our home studios.”
Jenn Hess || Teton Guitars A&R
We have been fortunate to have Michael perform on several occasions at our company functions. He is an accomplished musician and a top-notch artist. Whether he is playing individually or as part of a group, he always brings his dynamic musicality and personality to the function. We have asked Michael to play a wide range of music genres and he always exceeds expectations. We love having him at our functions and would highly recommend him to anyone that would ask. We always hope that he is available for events!
Customer Service Manager
S&S Worldwide, Inc.
I have had the pleasure of knowing Mike Christiansen over the past 10 years as a guest guitarist at my family-owned business. His expertise and talent have added to my business and many people come to the restaurant just to enjoy his music. He plays a variety of music and is constantly adding new songs to his playlist. I feel lucky that we are able to have a talent such as Mike to be a part of our community.
Owner, Le Nonne
Mike Christiansen has been affiliated with Utah State University for 39+ years in the Caine College of the Arts Music Department. His contributions as a faculty member as well as a regular go-to of ours for entertaining guests at events hosted by the President of the University have always exceeded our expectations. As a soloist or with his group, Lightwood Duo, he/they have entertained hundreds of guests for presidential events for years and we have never been disappointed with the performance and quality of entertainment provided. Mike has always been personable, easy to work with and always brings his best self and talents no matter the occasion.
Noelle E. Cockett
President, Utah State University