Saturday 19th Sept Gary Ryan Masterclass

It was, with a great deal of nerves, that your correspondent trudged his way to St Marks last Saturday to take part in the Gary Ryan Masterclass. This was a far greater challenge than the usual 'pluck and strum' that normally takes place each month. Tonight the focus would be on just the five of front of an audience. No pressure then!!

How was it going to go? Will I make a complete hash? Or will I get away with it...

I am sure that all these thoughts were roaming around the minds of each participant as we took our turns at the podium with Gary. And we needn't have worried. The warmth and humour that is generally characteristic of Gary's classes was well evident in his comments and advice to each of us. We were all put at our ease and, for my part, it was a great opportunity to gain a greater insight into my own technique as well as learning more about the music and the performance. It never ceases to amaze me how Gary can take a piece that he has just seen for the first time and play it flawlessly. Not only is he a great performer but an excellent teacher!

We had a terrific range of excellent and complex pieces such as Cardosa's Milonga (performed by Steve Pearson); Tarregga's Cappricio Arabe performed by Christine Dabrowa; Bach's Presto performed by Dave Hampton; Bogdanovich's Cantelina (Levantine Suite) performed by your correspondent and an ambitious performance of Torroba's Allegretto (Sonatina) by John Mann.

As usual our Chairman and Master of Ceremonies, Den Stockton carried out the necessary introductions with great aplomb and our audience were terrific in their support and appreciation. It was great fun and I definitely would recommend it to any member who is keen to improve their technique.

Thanks again Gary.

Once more thanks again to Trevor for organising the refreshments.

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