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Alturas Duo in Baltimore, MD on April 30, 2011 [Guitar + Multiple Instruments Concert]

2011 April 30
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

The Baltimore Classical Guitar Society has a cool presentation at 8 p.m. Saturday at Towson University’s Center for the Arts — the Alturas Duo, a unique combination of instruments (guitar, charango, viola) and repertoire (classical and South American).

Milos Karadaglic Story on Economist.com

2011 April 30
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

Milos Karadaglic’s debut CD of Mediterranean repertoire is out this month and includes pieces by two popular composers, Isaac Albéniz and Joaquín Rodrigo.

The 27-year-old Montenegrin blames the pop world for his instrument’s demise. “With the invention of the electric guitar, the instrument stopped being intimate and started to reach out into wider audiences,” he explains. “These technological advances resulted in the core classical guitar repertoire fading away. The guitar’s popularity within pop detracted from its popularity within the classical world.”

Read the whole article on economist.com

Video Lessons: The Future of Music Instruction?

2011 April 27
by Christopher Davis

webcam guitar lessons

Sometimes surprising things land in my inbox via Google Alerts. Today it was this…

Imagine taking in-depth, one-on-one guitar lessons from Jackson Browne or Richard Thompson. These are among the rarefied experiences offered by On The Music Path, a new iPad app designed to teach users to play real instruments with instruction from world-class musicians.

Also among the initial slate of lessons … “Intro to the Classical Guitar” from Scott Tennant, member of the Grammy®-winning L.A. Guitar Quartet.

via PRNewsWire

Scott Tennant is a big name to get on board with such a product. But he’s not the first pro guitarist to jump on the video lesson bandwagon. Martha Masters did a series of 20 lessons for a company called WorkShopLive a few years ago.

ArtistWorks is an advanced platform for video lessons and membership communities that a few artists teach with. There are probably many others as well.

Can You Get What You Need from a Video Lesson?

Maybe.

To some extent the first lessons on any instrument are the same for any student. Certain technical and musical foundations are laid out, and, from there, the teacher introduces new ideas that constantly relate to the fundamental principles.

Here’s an example:

A student walks into their first guitar lessons. Step one: teach them how to sit with the guitar. What does it entail? What does it feel like? Where does the footstool go? Etc. Every single day of practice following the lesson the student reinforces this sitting position. When that student comes back the following week, the teacher can give some feedback about improving the position. The same process repeats again and again (with any technique or musical element).

And there’s the rub. Learning music is about continually evolving: growing what you know by adding new features to it and constantly relating anything new to what you did before. How do we do that? By getting good feedback.

A teacher can help a student shape their technique or musicianship into something great.

Video Lessons and Their Foundations in Community

Are video lessons the future of music instruction? Probably. But apps like the “On The Path” don’t excite me. A passive experience? No thanks.

The video lessons that are effective are built on a community where virtual students can ask questions of the teacher and get answers in a (relatively) public space. One person’s questions benefits the entire subscribed community. Or, to put it in business jargon, the best video lessons & communities are subject to the effects of network externalities: the more people use the service (and ask questions) the better it is for everyone involved.

If video lessons are the future of the music instruction world, the most interesting thing is going be seeing how their creators will give the students the ability to ask questions.

Image by mshades

Assad Duo Concert Review

2011 April 27
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by Christopher Davis

Sergio and Odair Assad have moved audiences and inspired guitarists around the world for over 30 years with revelatory performances of Latin American music and European classics, original compositions, deep musicality, and supple, almost telepathic, guitar duo performances. In the late 1990’s they began to expand their ensemble sound in a series of collaborations with musicians like Dawn Upshaw, Gidon Kremer, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, and Yo-Yo Ma. Recently, they expanded their repertoire by exploring their ancestral roots in Lebanon.

Read the full review here: Assads Inspire & Challenge

[Guitar + Flute Concert] Cavatina Duo in Jamestown, NY on April 29, 2011

2011 April 26
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

The Jamestown Concert Association will host the Cavatina Duo, Eugenia Moliner, flute, and Denis Azabagic, guitar, at 8 p.m. Friday, in St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, 410 N. Main St.

[Guitar + Voice Concert] Karin Schaupp & Katie Noonan in Melbourne on May 12-14, 2011

2011 April 26
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

Katie Noonan and Karin Schaupp perform Songs of the British Isles at Melbourne Recital Hall from May 12–14. For more information and tickets, call 9699 3333 or visit melbournerecital.com.au

Jerome Ducharme in (Virtual) Concert [Monday Motivation]

2011 April 25
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by Christopher Davis

Last week, the Wichita guitar society had Jerome Ducharme, the 2005 GFA Competition Winner. But they also let the world see his concert: Chained Sky Studios webcast the entire thing. That concert is embedded below (there will be some ads, sorry). Jerome is a really oustanding player. I saw him when he was on his GFA Winners tour a few years ago.

The video recording here is not outstanding, but the sound is okay.

LA Guitar Quartet Review

2011 April 23
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

Guitar has been cursed, in a way, by its omnipresence in popular music; extreme compression has rendered the instrument’s tone a flat, loud electronic signal. Not so, however, in its traditional forum. The dynamics, phrasing and techniques of classical guitar are impressive without the need for effects or amplifiers.

The Los Angeles Guitar Quartet’s performance at Lawrence Saturday, April 16 reaffirmed the evocative nature of the instrument, covering a broad range of melodic and percussive sounds with only four musicians onstage. Their two-hour set covered a breadth of classic and modern repertoire, and emphasized their skill as an ensemble.

Read the rest of the review: lawrentian.com

Stuart Weber in Bozeman, Montana on April 30, 2011

2011 April 23
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

Stuart Weber, Bozeman’s resident classical guitar maven, will be
presenting his spring concert at The Ellen Theatre on Saturday,
April 30.

Called “Technically superb and emotionally engaging” by Modern
Guitars Magazine, Weber will perform works from his 25-year solo
career and is planning a bonus for those in attendance at the
concert. The evening will be capped off with a guest appearance by
renowned violinist Angella Ahn. This energetic collaboration began
last summer during a taping of the Emmy award-winning series “11th
& Grant with Eric Funk.” Ahn, a Bozeman resident and member of
the internationally acclaimed Ahn Trio, graced the session with a
guest appearance and a friendship between Ahn and Weber was
born.

Robert Trent in Pinehurst, North Carolina on 4/28/2011

2011 April 23
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by The Classical Guitar Blog

The Music Department of Sandhills Community College presents a concert by Dr. Robert Trent and the Radford University Guitar Trio Thursday, April 28, at 7 p.m. in Owens Auditorium on the college campus. This performance is free and open to the public.