Michael started playing the guitar as a teenager and quickly became obsessed with being a musician. A long serpentine journey led him to study with some of the world’s most accomplished musicians. He has performed in masterclasses with David Russell, Roland Dyens, Abel Carlevaro, Manuel Barrueco, Eliot Fisk, Roberto Ausell, Pepe Romero, Oscar Ghiglia and Sergio Assad, as well as lutenists Konrad Junghandel, Nigel North, Paul O’Dette and cellists Anner Bylsma and Yo Yo Ma.
He studied intensively with David Tanenbaum at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and earned a Master’s Degree there in 1989. Michael went on to complete a Doctorate of Musical Arts Degree at the University of Arizona where he also taught for several years.
An active classical guitarist, Michael has performed throughout the United States and Canada as a soloist and with numerous ensembles. His collaboration with other artists has created unusual and diverse performances, including improvisations with Indian tabla drummers and the commission of original works for guitar and modern dance. Michael’s interest in chamber music led to the formation of the Pacific Vanguard Duo, a guitar and flute ensemble specializing in 20th Century American music, which was featured on public radio.
In 1995 he performed Sir Michael Tippet’s The Blue Guitar, on the occasion of Tippet’s 90th birthday. The composer coached and attended the performance saying "[Michael] played as if telling a wonderful story”.
Michael currently lives on a small farm and has a teaching studio in Corvallis, Oregon.