Here’s Juanito Pascual playing Esteban de Sanlucar’s Panaderos Flamencos on a great 1962 Viuda y Sobrinos de Domingo Esteso from the Russell Cleveland Collection. Viuda y Sobrinos were of course the widow and nephews of Esteso, and those nephews are the original Conde brothers who would become Conde Hermanos.
We have photos of the next guitar being made for us by Tobias Berg. From Tobias: “as promised here are some pictures of the next guitar. It’s European Walnut for the Back and Sides (which of course will leave it’s “grey“ appearance behind as soon as the first coat of shellac is on). After that it will take on a warm brown “classic“ color. The headstock has two ebony strips for reinforcement but contrary to the Madrid school – it’s not visible as soon as the fingerboard is glued on. The top has been braced and soon all the parts will come together. More picture will follow.”
Here’s the Los Angeles Duo, Bryan Fasola and Donovan Butez, playing their arrangement of Yann Tiersen’s la Valse d’Amelie, with Bryan playing a 1970 Miguel Rodriguez spruce-top and Donovan playing a 1989 Miguel Rodriguez cedar-top, and Bryan’s arrangement of Debussy’s Reverie, with Bryan playing a 2005 Fritz Ober and Donovan playing a 1990 Ober/Blochinger.
Andy Culpepper grew up in a musical family with two brothers who are both accomplished musicians. He fell in love with the guitar as a teenager, shifting his focus from playing the Delta blues to playing classical music, and after discovering flamenco, he was hooked on the latter two styles for life.
Elemental Guitar, the newest addition to the Elemental Music program in Santa Monica, is heading into its second year under the direction of long-time GSI-friend, Mak Grgić. The program, for students in grades 3-6, features unique guitar classes that are designed to give each student a solid foundation in classical guitar technique, musicianship, and most importantly ensemble playing. For Elemental Guitar’s inaugural season, GSI helped the program get started by donating several Loriente guitars for students that were in need of a good instrument yet financially unable to purchase a suitable guitar. We’re thrilled to see a program like this one – with a low student to teacher ratio, high quality instruction, and engaging programs – develop and flourish in our very own backyard.
If you are located in the Santa Monica area and would like to receive more information on this program and know how to get your child involved, please visit Elemental Music’s website.
Tomasz Fechner came back to GSI on what turned out to be the day he went from being a Masters student at USC to being a DMA student (he had just finished his very last requirement). He had told us he was going to play seven movements from Alexandre Tansman’s Suite in Modo Polonico and agreed to play them on seven different guitars. The movements and guitars are as follows:
Entrée – 2015 Lucas Martin
Kujawiak – 2007 Jose Marin Plazuelo
Tempo di Polonaise – 1967 Daniel Friederich
Oberek – 2007 Dominique Field
Canzonetta – 1934 Marcelo Barbero
Alla Polaca – 2012 Yuichi Imai
Berceuse D’Orient – 1997 Hermann Hauser III
Danish luthier Kenneth Brögger has just returned from a recent visit to the world’s largest dealer of exotic tone-woods for musical instruments, Maderas Barber in Valencia, Spain. Since 1974, Kenneth has purchased most of the wood used to build his fine concert classical guitars (including his famous “Torres” replicas) there in the outskirts of Valencia. On this trip, Kenneth bought some beautiful flamed maple – fine straight-grained, even-colored with no runout – along with some beautiful bearclaw spruce for soundboards, and also Zirocote, Amazon Rosewood and Indian Rosewood for backs and sides.
Here’s the final installment of the Guitar CoOp John Williams interview. This is a landmark, in-depth interview with one of the very best classical guitarists of the last century and this one, conducted by interviewers who are themselves accomplished guitarists. In part 1 Marcelo Kayath of Guitar CoOp (which produced the video) and guitarist/composer Stephen Goss of the Royal Academy of Music discuss Williams’ early development as a guitarist and in particular Len Williams’ (his father) teaching style and philosophy. They discuss Williams’ early years and his great friendship with the recently deceased Alirio Diaz, and they conclude with a very interesting discussion of technique and of improvisation. In part 2 they discuss pop music, composition, repertoire, the 1960’s and more, and in part 3, titled ‘The Composers’ they discuss Baroque music, 19th Century composers, collaborations and more. In this fourth and final part they discuss practicing technique, life-long repertoire, relaxed playing and the guitars themselves.
We have a very special piece that has been over 20 years in the making – Ian Mitchell playing his Father Song, inspired by his good friend Philip Rosheger’s Serenade. Keep reading to learn more about the history of this beautiful piece and about Mitchell and Rosheger. Ian plays a stunning 1935 Hermann Hauser I from the Russell Cleveland Collection.