“Catch The Vision” is the theme of The Seventh Annual Harp Guitar Retreat to be held July 10th-13th at the home of John and Deirdra Doan atop Prospect Ridge overlooking the verdant Willamette Valley of Oregon.
Hang Time, Instruction, and Lots of Harp Guitars!
It is an intimate stress-free environment with all levels of playing/performing encouraged and accepted for an educational seminar limited to five to seven participants. The around the clock seminar not only involves playing the harp guitar but includes plenty of hang time to talk about, well, what else, harp guitar! Attendees are encouraged to arrive by the early evening of July 10th to get settled and acquainted.
John has a unique teaching style where students never know what he is going to do or say but the results always seem to inspire and transform the player.
The array of harp guitars and other stringed instruments are not to be looked at from behind a security line at a museum. These are to be touched and played by all!
Each day will include a private lesson one on one to explore the areas of music making that are important to each student. Every lesson is customized to meet the needs of that individual, at their level. While John pushes students to learn and do more, the student takes the lead, creating a unique educational experience for student and teacher sometimes.
An evening concert is scheduled for Saturday night to be up close and personal with the magic of the music and the setting. John’s concerts are an experience of the weaving together of the harp guitar, music and storytelling.
Some attendees add to the program with hands on experience in front of a live audience. It’s a great way of testing your performance abilities, and interact with the audience.
One evening will be a private concert for only the retreat attendees. This exclusive evening is a chance for the retreat participants to relax and enjoy sharing their beautiful music together.
An open night is usually full of surprises. Anything can happen, and has over the years. People bring all types of instruments, sometimes from around the globe. We have a great time exploring the music and talents of all the participants.
Catching the Vision
This is more than a seminar but an opportunity to meet new friends, play a variety of harp guitars, and to become inspired, surrounded by talent of all levels and types.
“The retreat was really great for me, and I think you really helped open up some doors in my mind and in my heart. I am feeling very inspired. I’m filled with lots of good ideas and I’ve been feeling like my guitar work is valuable, important. I really appreciated our conversations and your kind words.
I really needed a little something to get me moving. I have been living in my own reclusive guitar universe for a long time now. I had some fear in trying to bring my musical imagery to other people, but now I am prepared to really try.
You and your playing were inspiring. I find myself thinking about the difference between doing and being, and about the difference between doing music and being music.”
“The Harp Guitar Retreat was a blast for me. It is hard to say which was my favorite moment because every moment was so much fun!”
“But if I had to choose I would say that it was my being able to sit in on all the “master classes” and learning from all the students! I so enjoyed being “a fly on the wall” during the individual lessons as I heard Sensei John instruct all the players! Everyone was so awesomely friendly, despite my weird South East (Asian) accent! I Thank everyone in attendance for being my friends so quickly. Wonderful sharing, from tons of music sheets from Angele, to experiencing for the first time new Twelve-Tone-thing-a-magic from Nick, to hearing the angelic voice of Mel that morning, to learning about peizo-pickups on the harpie from Jerry and of course, the see a rising star like Mr Bellue! All of you ROCK…oh, I mean, TWANG!
And of course, John and Deirdre were wonderful hosts at the top of that big rock somewhere in Salem. From the time I came until the time I left, nothing was amiss! It was so surreal playing “Farewell” on the original Sullivan-Elliott harp guitar, something I have only seen on YouTube and heard on my iTunes. It was worth the 3 years that I had to plan for this.”
Gerry Camp, initially tried to disguise himself so that no one would know that it was he who was secretly desiring to master the 20 string harp guitar.
Adrian Bellue also had initially been hiding behind a false mustache and a six string guitar while secretly dreaming what he would do if he ever got his hands on a twenty string harp guitar.
They, and the others at the retreat, began to catch the vision that there really is a world to explore of musical ideas when using the added range, resonance, and increased facility of the twenty string harp guitar. It was only natural to wonder what it would sound like with multiple harp guitars being played at the same time
Enjoying the Setting
The setting is the incredible backdrop for this memorable retreat – dazzling views, twenty-four hour hot tub, and sunsets to cause one to stop and ponder what life is all about. We just ask that you keep your guitar out of the hot tub, if that is not too much to ask.
For More Information and Registration
This event emphasizes instruction and inspiration for those wanting to learn or improve their harp guitar playing skills in a hands-on environment. To read more about past Harp Guitar Retreats see posting else where on this site (6th Annual Harp Guitar Retreat Huge Success in “Featured Posts”).
Instruction will address playing harp guitars with sub-basses as well as harp guitars with sub-basses and super-trebles. There will be several harp guitars available to use if you don’t have a harp guitar or would have trouble bringing one to the seminar. There will be private and group lessons, intimate concerts, and lots of kick back and practice time to suit your interests.
Instruction: Instruction will include two daily group sessions and a half hour private session. John Doan will perform an evening concert on Friday and Saturday and the participants may perform on Friday and Sunday evening if there is interest. The morning and afternoon private and group sessions will focus on harp guitar fingerboard and string theory, performance issues, music composition, and just having fun.
Location: The retreat is at the home of John and Deirdra Doan nestled near the summit of Prospect Ridge in Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley. The location is simply breathtaking with180 degree westerly views of green rugged forests, sprawling farmlands, and distant coastal mountains which explains why Oregon is a very popular summer vacation destination.
The site is approximately one hour from the Portland International Airport with local bus and train service fifteen minutes away in Salem. There is a bus service direct from the airport to downtown Salem where you can be picked up or you can elect to rent a car for greater freedom to explore the area.
Included with registration: All lodging and meals are on site and included with registration. Printed materials are provided for each student with a series of exercises and compositions to take home after the retreat.
Instruments available on site: There will be seven or more harp guitars on site for your use if you do not have one of your own to bring to the seminar.
These include the following:
- Knutsen harp guitar (1897) with 5 sub-basses and 7 super-trebles
- Gibson harp guitar (1906) with six sub-basses
- Dyer harp guitar (1920’s) with six sub-basses
- Two or more Jay Buckey harp guitars (2013-14) with 6 sub-basses 7 sub-basses and 8 super trebles
- Sullivan/Elliot harp guitar (1986- the first harp guitar of modern times with 6 sub-basses and 8 super-trebles
- Brunner Travel Harp guitar (2011) with 6 sub-basses and 8 super-trebles
Incidental Activities: There is plenty of hiking trails, tax free shopping, local wine tasting, on site hot tub, trampoline, and wireless internet. The site is central and about one hour away from the Oregon Coast, the high desert of Bend, and the cities of Portland and Eugene. In between classes and private lessons there will be time to just relax, practice, read, explore the area, or casually visit with other harp guitarists.
Space is limited: Retreats are limited from five to seven participants and their guests. Spouses, friends, or family attend at a reduced rate. If needed an additional weekend retreat will be scheduled to accommodate more participants.
Participants Fee: $685. Includes four nights stay, three group sessions, three private lessons, meals, evening presentations, and various incidentals.
Additional guests Fee: $250. Includes four nights stay, meals, evening presentations, and various incidentals.
To enroll or for more information call or write: h[email protected]
Snail Mail: PO Box 5081, Salem, OR 97304