The Oxford Guitar Society had their annual concert with a difference in the church of St.Mary and St.Nicholas in Littlemore, Oxford yesterday, the 20th May 2018.
They were joined by the Studenten Gitaar Ensemble Nederland and their lively and enthusiastic conductor, Susana Opanski.
After some soulful playing of a Milonga and Roland Dyens’ arrangement of Alfonsina y el Mar, they did a wild and wickedly funny version of Libertango by Piazzolla.
They were then joined by Dan Bovey and Julian Vickers to play a version of Dowland’s Lachrimae with Sweelinck’s variations. What a wonderful sound!
This was followed by a standout performance of my “Lorca” concerto.
The SGEN gave it their all, complementing the wonderful virtuosity and fluidity of the soloists.
Many thanks to Steve Greenslade and the OGS for making this such a memorable occasion!
We had a great time afterwards at the Tree Hotel in Iffley – it was a beautiful summer evening and the SGEN barely made it back int time to Oxford station to catch their train for their concert in London the next day.
I had a chance to chat to Susana, with whom I had a lot in common.
She believes that music connects us and that all cultures, ages and abilities have a common voice through this.
The Ensemble is made up of students and ex students of hers, some of whom are not professional musicians. They do not receive a grant and so feel free to play the repertoire they love.
Their enthusiasm and sense of belonging is infectious and evident in their performance.