John Williams Queen Elizabeth Hall July 1989

selftaughtgirl has this to say about this wonderful concert, which most of the known guitar world in the UK at the time attended:

“John Williams gave a concert at the Queen Elizabeth Hall (UK) on 19th July 1989 which was broadcast live on the radio. I was at the concert so a friend pressed the record button for me. I remember JW limping onto the stage as he had hurt himself playing tennis and also him reading the Ponce from the score. I last heard him only a couple of weeks ago playing two concertos at the RFH (the main hall next door to the QEH) and still on fine form.
Villa-Lobos: 5 Preludes
Ponce: Variations and fugue on “La Folia”
Brouwer:Elogio de la Danza, Berceuse, Danza Characteristica
Barrios: La Ultima Cancion, Cueca, Aconquija, Choro de Saudade, Waltzes Op 8 Nos 3 & 4
Piazzolla: Verano Portena (as encore)”


This is a marvellous record of a great performance. Thank you, selftaughtgirl!

A few years earlier, the newly reformed “John Williams and Friends”, of which I was a part, toured the UK, Ireland and Italy. Unlike this concert, there were quite a few hi jinx on stage (including Brian Gulland, taking a break from his bassoon duties,dressed as a chef and making an omelette while JW and I played some duets!).

Nigel North plays Bach on BBC Radio 3

Nigel North - photograph by Hanya Chlala

selftaughtgirl’s recording of a radio broadcast from the 1980s of a series called “Bach on the Lute” featuring Nigel North, whom I met Oxford University Students’ Union on one of his many visits. A very nice person and a great artist.
Bach: Prelude in Cm (BWV 999)
Bach: Fugue in Gm (BWV 1000)
Bach: Suite in E (BWV 1006a)

Altamira Shanghai Guitar Festival

Altamira posterA personal take on this amazing event which had 450 contestants and 120 jury, and concerts and clsasses by Aniello Desiderio, Eliot Fisk, the Amadeus Duo, Emma Rush, Eva Beneke, Kuang Junhong, Beijing Quartet, etc and yours truly with a movement from
China Sings!” for guitar solo and Guitar orchestra


Interview with Rene Izquierdo


Iserlohn 2014 was a wonderful place to reconnect with old friends and make new ones.
Here is an interview with Rene Izquierdo, whom I finally got to meet and listen to.

Iserlohn 2014 – photo impressions

Iserlohn 2014

Some photos of the festival – thanks to all who took part to make it a special place for making wonderful music and friends.


Marcelo Kayath: studio concert playing Buxtehude, Jolivet, Sor, & Nobre

selftaughtgirl’s recording of a radio broadcast from the 1980s of a studio concert by Marcelo Kayath:
Buxtehude: Suite in Em (arr Bream)
Jolivet: Comme un prelude
Sor: Sonata Op 15
Nobre: Prologo e Toccata

Rare performances of the Jolivet and Nobre and a nicely ornamented version of the Buxtehude Sarabande.
Also, here is a very interesting article in Guitar Salon International by Kayath which poses the question of whether the guitar is a miniature orchestra, and reflections on Bream and Segovia.

Here is a 17 year old Kayath playing Ponce

An interesting postscript is that In 1992 he went to Stanford to get his MBA and after graduating became an investment banker, eventually becoming co-CEO of Credit Suisse Investment Banking in Brazil, a $1 billion business!
Glad that a guitarist made it.
Luckily he can now afford to come back to the guitar

Miguel Llobet: original recordings introduced by Robert Spencer


Something special -

selftaughtgirl’s recording of a radio broadcast from the 1980s in which Robert Spencer (a leading figure in the early music field, equally accomplished as a singer, lutenist, guitarist, musicologist and teacher) introduces recordings made by Miguel Llobet (3 in duo with Maria Luisa Anido).
Coste: Etude Op 38 No 23
Sor: Etude Op 35 No 22 (ie. Segovia #5)
Llobet: El Testament d’Amelia, El Mestre
Mendelssohn: Song without words Op 62 No 1
Albeniz: Evocacion
Aguirre: Huella
Llobet: Study in E (played by Leif Christensen)
Quijano: Estilo Popular Argentino

Gabriel Estarellas: studio concert playing Anon, Sor, Ponce, & Dodgson

Continuing our exploration of “historic” and rare guitar performances courtesy of selftaughtgirl, a radio broadcast from the 1980s of a studio concert by Gabriel Estarellas:
Anon.: Six Renaissance Dances
Sor: Variations on “Marlborough S’en Va T’en Guerre”, Op. 28
Ponce: Estrellita
Dodgson: Partita No 3 (first broadcast performance)