The next leg of the tour brought me to the northeast of France into the Alsace region on the border or Germany and Switzerland. This is a lush green expanse of mountains and rivers littered with scores of small rustic villages. It is here where Yaouen lives with his family in the shadow of ancient castles and winding rivers.
In 2005, I hosted the third International Harp Guitar Festival (Sept. 3-4) at Willamette University where I am a professor of music. The event managed to attract a large crowd consisting of many students, faculty and staff, and members of the community nearly filling Hudson Hall for the evening concert.
We had just over 71 people attending the workshops and presentations from 4 countries and 14 states. Over a dozen harp guitarists came to perform (and I might add mystified the audience with their playing), an equal number of noted luthiers discussed their latest designs, along with three published scholars who made presentations of their research. The stage in Hudson was an absolute spectacle displaying 65 antique to modern harp guitars (a display the first of it’s kind). This was largely due to the temporary loan of two crates of rare instruments shipped up from Los Angeles from the Miner Museum.
It is a humble group that has grown in numbers over the years and promises to continue to evolve. Go to Harp Guitars for information on the next Gathering.