Garden steps by Andrew York played by Brian Farrell


In my scheme of things, this is a Level/Grade 4 (Lower exit) piece.

Andrew York ‘is one of today’s best loved composers for classical guitar and a performer of international stature. His compositions blend the styles of ancient eras with modern musical directions, creating music that is at once vital, multi-levelled and accessible.’ Taken from www.andrewyork.net

Brian Farrell is largely self-taught, however he initially took lessons with the late Barry Lawlor who was  one of Ireland’s finest guitar teachers and Barry’s teaching had a profound impact on Brian’s career.

Un dia de Novembre by Leo Brouwer

I have placed this haunting little piece at Grade 4 (Lower Exit) in my system, and Guitaburst have assigned it to Level 8 . It is an advanced beginner or entrance intermediate piece. Here it is played by Tatyana Ryzhkova

Lagrima by Tarrega

I usually post virtuosa performances of professional concert level pieces to provide us all with inspiration, pleasure and something to aspire to.  However, for the next few posts, I want to deviate from this and post performances, and lessons where available, of beautiful pieces that the average amateur guitarist can manage.

I have already featured a professional performance of the Tarrega’s lovely tune ‘Lagrima’ in the intermediate section of this site, but I neglected to include an actual lesson. So here is Simon Powis giving an excellent lesson on how to play this haunting little piece. I have also now included this in the Intermediate Music section.

The score I use is transcribed by Bradford Werner and you can find it HERE.

Lagrima is graded either as Advanced Beginner or Intermediate yet it is often performed by top-class players as part of their extended repertoire.

J.S.Bach Air on a G string played by Per-Olov KIndgren

Air on a G String is an arrangement for the violin from Johann Sebastian Bach’s Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D major. Bach originally wrote the suite for Prince Leopold of Anhalt in the early 18th century. It only became known as Air on a G String in 1871 when the German violinist August Wilhelmj made a violin and piano arrangement of the second movement of this orchestral suite. By changing the key into C major and transposing the melody down an octave, Wilhelmj was able to play the piece entirely on the G string of his violin.

Tárrega: Gran Vals – Anika Hutschreuther

Here, German classical guitarist Anika Hutschreuther plays Gran Vals by the great Francisco Tárrega;  my favourite waltz for guitar.

Anika studied at the Stuttgart Academy of Music and the Hamburg conservatory. She plays classical guitar and baroque guitar at the highest level and performs as a soloist and chamber musician in Germany and abroad.

J. S. Bach: Cello Suite Nr. 1 BWV 1007, arr. Smaro Gregoriadou

And now for something completely different!

The guitar featured in this performance was made by Greek luthier Yorgos Kertsopoulos. He describes the instrument as “designed and constructed by me in 1996 and it is a multi-timbre rectangular guitar with movable back pedal. As the guitarist plays, by pressing slightly the guitar’s back to her/his chest, pedal effects on the sound are produced

You can access the luthier’s site HERE.

Here is John Feeley playing the same piece on a conventional classical guitar.

Agustìn Barrios – Confesiòn / played by Lorenzo Bernardi

I have taken this video from my favourite classical guitar teaching site, Bradford Werner’s Thisisclassicalguitar.

This what Bradford writes concerning this performance:

Lorenzo Bernardi Plays Confesiòn by Paraguayan guitarist and composer, Agustín Barrios Mangoré (1885–1944). This comes via Bernardi’s Youtube Channel. Guitar made by Philip Woodfield. Some nice musical playing by this young Italian guitarist. “Also known as Confesión de Amor (Confession of Love), Confesión is an example of the genre known as romanza, a slow, melodic piece in duple metre expressive of romantic feeling. Barrios wrote this work in 1923 and recorded it on 21st June, 1928. Here he places the melody in the bass register with the harmonic accompaniment in the upper voices. A profound knowledge of the instrument is necessary to achieve this type of textural writing, and Confesión, together with his Romanza en Imitación al Violoncello, is a masterful display of virtuosity and skill.

I have posted Barrios’ Confesion before but I particularly like this interpretation.

 

An Malvina by Johann Kaspar Mertz

Matthew McAllister plays with his usual competence and style – you can view his website HERE. The piece, Bardenklänge, Op. 13, No. 1,  is by J.K.Mertz, a 19th century virtuoso and composer. He was married to a concert pianist and his compositions reflect her influence on his music.

Drew Henderson plays Zapateado

Joaquin Rodrigo was born in Sagunto, Valencia, and lost his sight at the age of three. Despite this, he began to study piano and violin at the age of eight. Many credit him with raising the Spanish guitar to dignity as a universal concert instrument and he is best known for his guitar music. However, he never mastered the instrument himself.

Drew Henderson is a virtuoso classical guitarist often cited as one Canada’s best young classical guitarists. Here he plays the final movement of Tres Piezas Españolas by Joaquin Rodrigo (1901-1999)