Under the directorship of Andrew Gough, West Dean College of Arts and Conservation once again offers the celebrated International Classical Guitar Festival in the idyllic and relaxing surroundings which make this the perfect setting for concerts, lessons, masterclasses and ensemble coaching.
The 2020 Festival includes an intensive timetable of events and instruction in a wide range of areas; repertoire classes, ensemble performing, guitar orchestra, individual lessons, ‘the Learning Zones’, and solo masterclasses. A full list of the learning opportunities is in the outline programme and timetable attached.
Evening concerts and recitals
This year we can look forward to an exciting series of evening recitals by international concert artists, performing solo and guitar quartet repertoire. The evening series commences on Saturday with a solo recital by prize-winning Croatian virtuoso Zoran Dukić. On Monday evening the ever-popular Gary Ryan makes a welcome return to the West Dean stage. We then conclude the series with a West Dean debut performance by the Mēla Guitar Quartet on Tuesday evening.
The Open Day on Sunday 23 August (12.30pm – 7pm) will again celebrate all things guitar; with a wide selection of guitars and music on display and a variety of events to enjoy. This year we will be including a guitar makers’ showcase with a special in-depth discussion and demonstration about each guitar by Jan Depreter. David Leisner will be our guest lecturer, discussing his new book ‘Playing with Ease’, and Zoran Dukić will be giving a masterclass. At 6pm we welcome Helen Sanderson and The NYGE Fellowship Ensemble to the stage in St. Andrew’s Church to conclude our Open Day event.
The carefully planned and highly varied programme will appeal to all enthusiasts, from grade two level experience all the way to advanced. The course is open to anyone aged eighteen (18) and over.
Guitar Festival Timetable
Several evening events are planned throughout the week, a detailed timetable for the festival week will be given to you on arrival.
Residential students to arrive from 2 - 3.30pm, non-residential students to arrive by 3.30pm.
4pm: Welcome and introduction, attendance is essential.
5pm: First teaching session, followed by dinner (included).
Classes 9.15 - 6pm, lunch is included.
From 6.30pm: Dinner (included).
Evening working - students may have access to teaching rooms, but only with their tutor's permission and provided any health and safety guidelines are observed.
Classes 9.15am - 2pm, lunch is included.
Residential students should vacate their rooms by 10am please.
You need to bring your own guitar, music stand, foot-stool/guitar-rest, and a selection of current repertoire to use in lessons and repertoire classes, and for performances in the student concerts.
Alison is a highly experienced guitar tutor, music publisher (Holley Music) and ensemble guitarist with the Aragon Guitar Quartet and in a duo with Gerald Garcia.
Andrew Gough (Guitar Festival Director) is head of guitar at the Birmingham Conservatoire Junior Department and also teaches at The Blue Coat School and King Edward's School, Birmingham.
David Leisner is an international soloist, recording artist and composer. He is artistic director of Guitar Plus in New York and co-chair of the guitar department at the Manhattan School of Music.
Gerald Garcia combines a career in performing and recording guitar music with composing and arranging for films and the stage. He is an experienced director of educational workshops and conducts numerous amateur guitar ensembles in Britain.
Helen is Head of Guitar at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Artistic Director of the World Youth Guitar Festival and NYGE, adjudicator and chamber musician.
Jan is a Belgian international prize winning concert guitarist, recording artist and composer. He is host for the Antwerp Guitar Festival and cultural ambassador for Flanders.
Mark Ashford is an international performer and teacher. He was a scholarship student at both Chetham’s School of Music and the Royal Academy of Music where he graduated with first class honours. He is now Head of Guitar at the Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and Director of the National Youth Guitar Ensemble-Birmingham.
Zoran is an international prize winning soloist from Croatia and versatile chamber musician. He tutors at the Royal Conservatoire in The Hague and is visiting artist at Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.