With so many talented, highly trained classical guitarists in the world now, there must be a wealth of information available about the instrument and how it is played. Playing technique has become more and more standardised with evenness and accuracy of playing combined with consistent, appealing tone production the norm. This is helpful not only in solo guitar playing but perhaps more-so in ensemble and guitar orchestra situations where instruments need to blend and work in sync. An even technique is also desirable for sound and videos recordings. At the same time, standardised technique leads to one classical guitarist sounding at least similar or even identical to the next. One of the great things about classical guitar of past generations is that different masters of the instrument each had their own unique sound which was instantly recognisable. Their expressive abilities were not held back by fear of producing less than perfect tone but driven more by their musical imaginations and willingness to take risks. Their right hand techniques were cultivated so that they could play and be heard in large concert halls whereas guitarists today with a light touch would need to rely on amplification. It has been said that perfection is death and the enemy of progress. If you don't explore possibilities and take the occasional risk you stop learning and die (well, not literally but artistically speaking!) This applies not only to guitar technique but also choice of repertoire. While it is important to keep standard guitar music alive, paying tribute to the instrument's past, the way to artistic growth is to encourage, embrace and champion new music. Be a risk taker and develop your own unique style!
Standardise or stand alone?
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