West Sussex Guitar Club

Charity No. 1124762

Patrons: Gary Ryan & Fabio Zanon

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Aquarelle Guitar Quartet

The Aquarelle Guitar Quartet is an exciting ensemble exploring the diversity of music for four guitars. Since their formation in 1999 the AGQ have performed extensively in major festivals including Grassington, Ryedale and Newbury Spring Festivals and in venues including St. David’s Hall, Cardiff, Bolivar Hall, London and Bridgewater Hall, Manchester. They have appeared as soloists with a number of regional orchestras in Rodrigo’s Concierto Andaluz for four guitars. Most recently, they gave a recital at the Euripedes Amphitheatre, Athens in the presence of the British Ambassador for Greece and appeared at the Last Night of the Proms in Heaton Park, Manchester.

All members are graduates of the Royal Northern College of Music where they were the first guitar quartet to receive the Diploma in Professional Performance, RNCM’s highest performance award. The AGQ have received scholarships from the Musicians Benevolent Fund and the Tillett Trust to study abroad with renowned guitarists Sergio Assad and Oscar Ghilia. In November 2004, they toured Ireland performing in venues including the Helix, Dublin and Christchurch Cathedral, Waterford. In the same year, they were also selected from a number of ensembles as principal winners of the prestigious Tunnell Trust award, comprising of a series of recitals in Scotland in 2005/2006.

In addition to mainstream concerts, the AGQ have been involved in many outreach and educational projects. For a number of years they performed on the Live Music Now! young artists scheme, founded by Lord Menuhin, and they have given masterclasses in specialist music institutions including the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, and Cork School of Music.

In their programmes, the AGQ are dedicated to presenting works from around the globe that span from the renaissance to the present day. They have been sent works to perform by established international composers including Carlos Rafael Rivera (U.S.A), Phillip Houghton (Australia) and Stephen Dodgson (U.K). The group are constantly expanding their repertoire with their own arrangements from various musical genres, including works by Villa-Lobos, Mussorgsky, Rossini, film music composer Ryuichi Sakamoto, and folk harpist Catriona McKay.

Their recordings include their debut CD Promenade, which was released in May 2005 and Watersmeet, a collaborative CD of Stephen Dodgson’s guitar music, released on the Cadenza label in March 2006. Website