Daniel Roest and the Sacramento Guitar Society hosted the first West Coast Guitar Societies Roundtable, with our friend Dr. Matt Hinsley as keynote speaker, and we certainly hope it will be the first of many (first annual, maybe?). GSI was happy to provide a guitar that was raffled to raise funds to help defray some of the costs, and by all accounts the event was a huge success. I’ll let Daniel tell you the rest…

West Coast Guitar Societies Roundtable Fires Up Classical Guitar Community

By Daniel Roest, Sacramento Guitar Society President and Conference Director

The Sacramento Guitar Society hosted a gathering of western guitar societies April 16th 2011, led by the most capable person in the country to do so – Dr. Matthew Hinsley, Executive Director of the Austin Classical Guitar Society in Austin, Texas. The West Coast Guitar Societies Roundtable was conceived after I met Dr. Hinsley at the 2008 Guitar Foundation of America Festival and Competition in  San Francisco . In Matt Hinsley I met such talent, inspiration and positive energy that I knew we in Sacramento had to get him to consult for us.

With huge help from my board, particularly Secretary-Treasurer Steve Roberts, the inclusion of as many voices representing guitar societies began – whether they were robust, developed ones like the South Bay Guitar Society, dormant societies like the North Bay Guitar Society, and dreams, like the North Coast Guitar Society. I was particularly keen to have Matt answer questions from unfunded individuals who needed a roadmap – and what a roadmap, indeed! Hinsley is the author of the recently released Creativity to Community – Arts Nonprofit Success One Coffee at a Time.

From Vancouver B.C. to California, guitar society boards came and not only drank in the wealth of material provided, but asked questions they needed help with and got showcase performances by rising concert artists – Jon Mendle, Matthew Lyons, Ray Zhou and Arina Burcéva, showing the kind of outstanding concert talent available to them without the artist fees beyond reach.

Of prime importance to Steve Roberts and me was securing sponsorship, and String Letter Publishing owner David A. Lusterman came through in a big way, promising both a significant contribution and an article on the topic. Guitar Salon International donated a terrific cedar top classical guitar for the evening concert raffle. A local photographer was engaged to document the day, luthiers brought their instruments and the whole event was recorded on for a DVD by Richard Goyette.

A marvelous aspect of the conference was the bringing together of such different stakeholders in classical guitar: both online sales interests and local retailers, high-end luthiers and Chinese importers, amateur players and seasoned professionals, guitar majors from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and the people who would hire them to perform on concert, photographers and a videographer and their prospective clients. Apparently the event was quite the success, as evidenced by the after-event reviews.

If you are in need of inspiration for your guitar society or the guitar scene in your area, watch for the Acoustic Guitar Magazine feature later this year, and pick up a copy of Matt Hinsley’s book. As for myself and my team, we couldn’t be happier with the results. We owe a huge thanks to all the participants and sponsors. Bravo!

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9 Responses to “Sacramento Guitar Society Roundtable”

  1. […] READ MORE via Sacramento Guitar Society Roundtable | Guitar Salon International | The Blog […]

  2. David Schramm says:

    The Fresno Guitar Society, founded by Juan Serrano, stopped operating in the early 1990’s. It is not dormant, it hasn’t existed for nearly 20 years. The San Joaquin Valley Guitar Society, based out of Fresno was formed in 2002 to the present.

  3. Please allow me to introduce some additional facts to those so eloquently stated by The President of The San Joaquin Valley Guitar Society, David Schramm, (who received the Dean’s Medal as Outstanding Masters Graduate of The Department of Music at California State University, Fresno).

    The San Joaquin Valley Guitar Society IS active. As the founding and current Vice-President of this Society, along with David Schramm, David Macias, Ron Henderson, and Raul Betancourt, and many others, we have co-sponsored the annual Fresno State Guitar Festival (founded by Juan Serrano in 1984) since 2003. We have presented Juan Serrano, Eliot Fisk, George Sakelariou, Scott Tennant, William Kannengeiser, Michael Chapdelaine, Adam del Monte, Yaelisa Caminos Flamencos, Jason Mcguire, Julian Byzantine, Richard “Ricardo” Marlow, Jesus Montoya, The SF Guitar Quartet, Steve Thachuk, and more.

    We have raised thousands of dollars performing for The San Joaquin River Parkway Trust.

    We continually do outreach in under-represented communities, as for example, I teach an El Sistema “nucleo” in on the east side of Salinas every Friday afternoon and Saturday at Upper Sherwood Elementary School.

    Currently as the VP of this society and Director of Guitar Studies at Fresno State, I have secured the donation of the entire archives and life’s work of Manolo Sanlucar and created with Manolo Sanlucar, The Institute for The Dissemination of Flamenco at Fresno State. This society, through my recent efforts and those of my colleague and co-director of the Institute, Javier Alcantara-Rojas, have translated Manolo Sanlucar’s treatise “Sobre la guitarra flamenca: teoria y sistema” and will publish it this year in English. We also are in charge of transcription, copying, and engraving of Manolo Sanlucar’s greatest work, which will be announced in a press conference at The University of Granada, La Cartuja Campus immediately after we present our double-blind peer reviewed article with Manolo Sanlucar and major figures from Spain on June 9-11, 2011.

    This is the current work of the San Joaquin Valley Guitar Society. We will present the next co-sponsored Fresno State Guitar Festival in April 2013 as I will be on sabbatical from December 2011 to August 2012, working closely on a daily basis with Manolo Sanlucar, for the greater good of the Fresno guitar community, on behalf of Fresno State and The San Joaquin Valley Guitar Society.

    Applications are still being accepted for the study abroad at the Cordoba Guitar Festival with David Russell, Yamashita, Manolo Sanlucar, and cantaor Arcangel. Email cwhitehad@csufresno.edu for information before May 11th.

    Corey Whitehead, D.M.A

  4. Ciro Hurtado says:


    I’ll be performing in Fresno on
    Sunday, September 18
    6:30 pm, The Brick Wall – http://www.fresnofolklore.org
    2003 N. Van Ness Blvd., Fresno, CA 93704
    Tickets: $15
    Please Post

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