A low-numbered, but high-quality turnout today. Kicked off by Bill Samson, playing his recreation of a circa 1912 Manuel Ramirez guitar. The two pieces by Sagreras, Lessons 6 and 9 from his second volume were despatched consummately, and the word charming would go a long way to summing them up. The Julio Sagreras method is less weel-kent in the UK than the Americas, but deserves to be better known in Europe. All the pieces in the six volumes were composed by Sagreras (a pupil of Tárrega) himself, and are all of a similar quality. Bill got to play them twice, when late-comers arrived. The first time through had good moments, the second time, just perfect.
Not having anything prepared, Rob MacKillop borrowed Bill’s guitar for two pieces by Augustin Barrios, a little-heard Prelude in Dm, and the more famous barcarolle, Julia Florida. These are beautiful pieces, and Rob brought the most out of them.
It has been wonderful to watch the emergence of Chris Jupp as a recital-level performer, as today’s all-too short sequence of four pieces by Pierre Attaignant attest. The first three are La Brosse, subtitled bass dance, recoup, and touridon. They were followed by a pavane. Well done, sir!
Dorothee Burchard treated us to her best playing yet, with another dance by Attaignant, this time from Stefan Lundgren’s Method for the Renaissance Lute. Previously, Dorothee’s nerves got the better of her, but today she held her nerve, and presented a decent performance, which augurs well for future development. Well done, Dorothee. She was then joined by her teacher, Eric Thomas, for a delightful dander through Greensleeves, from an unspecified source.
Eric Thomas played us out with a fine programme of 6c repertoire from Spinacino (Ricercar 14), Firminus Caron (Benedictus), Hayne van Ghizeghem (Eric’s own intabulation of De tous bien plaine), and Dalza (a ricercar, and – with Chris Jupp playing the tenor part – the famous Calata). This was a fascinating recital, beautifully played, and with the added interest of the performer’s own intabulation. Eric is really developing as a concert artist.
Hopefully we can have a Christmas gathering, with a few more attendees. Start preparing!