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29 April 2024 – Spring is Springing, the Grads are Gradding…

Another April passes by; the end of another teaching year approaches; Paul prepares to say farewell to another crop of Grade 12’s (Senior 4’s, Level III’s, High School Seniors – call them what you will according to your own schooling nomenclature). These four* have done some terrific work over the last decade or so, both individually and as an ensemble. Two of them have been working on repertoire that I did for my Master’s, and all have worked on material from my own undergraduate days. Hopefully it won’t be long before I have another high-school quartet ready to take on Brouwer’s Cuban Landscape with Rain! I’m pretty danged proud of them, and I’m going to miss them all deeply once they head off in pursuit of their futures.

(*Please disregard the short guy in the middle – it’s inevitable that they all grow taller than me eventually…)

In other news: the Madryga guitar stable welcomed a new arrival a couple of weeks ago – after a long sea voyage from Germany (I swear, Deutsche Post must have sent it by Viking longboat…), it finally made landfall on the Assiniboine River’s mighty banks:

The Frameworks guitar, from the workbench of master guitar builder Hans Schulmeister in Neumarkt Sankt Veit, will make travelling with an instrument a whole lot more hassle-free – the upper and lower bouts come apart from the main frame and the whole shebang packs into a bag small enough to fit in the overhead bin of a 737. Got downtime while waiting for a connecting flight? Put the guitar together and practise! It will also serve as an excellent axe for amplified gigs: sounds great when plugged into a good acoustic amp, plays beautifully like the handcrafted guitar that it is, and I won’t have to continually expose my precious Perry concert guitar to the winter elements. Thanks are extended to Mr. Don Ross, who was kind enough to respond to my out-of-the-blue Facebook message and give the Frameworks company a glowing recommendation.

Finally: the move into Guitar Shack v2.0 is imminent. Pictures of the interior (particularly the teaching studio, which at the moment still thinks it’s a living room) to follow, but for now, here’s the new abode-to-be in its finest winter attire:

That’s it for now, my friends. Pick and grin!


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