Local musicians, Cuban guitarists will perform
By Ann McCreary
Original compositions based on the poetry of Wendell Berry, a multi-media presentation on Latin American guitar music, and a performance by an internationally known Cuban guitarist are among the offerings at a three-day guitar music festival this weekend.
GuitarFest 2015 will be held Nov. 6, 7 and 8 in Twisp. The event opens Friday at 7 p.m. at The Merc Playhouse with a concert featuring Twisp guitarist Terry Hunt.
Hunt will perform music by Legnani, Sainz de la Maza and Frederic Hand. He will lead an ensemble of local musicians and tenor Steve Stefanides of Wenatchee in a performance of songs composed by Hunt based on 10 poems of Wendell Berry.
The songs were commissioned by Stefanides, who sang music Hunt composed based on poems by William Stafford about five years ago. Stefanides contacted Berry, who has a farm in Kentucky, and obtained the rights to the poems about two years ago, Hunt said.
Berry’s poetry often reflects his belief that humans must learn to live in harmony with the natural rhythms of the earth or perish, according to The Poetry Foundation. Berry also believes that traditional values, such as marital fidelity and strong community ties, are essential for the survival of humankind.
The performance features Hunt on guitar, pianist Lynette Westendorf, violinist Matt Armbrust, flutist Marcy Stamper and cellist Pam Hunt.
“It’s kind of a unique ensemble. I like to branch out beyond the guitar. It’s healthy for the instrument to collaborate,” Hunt said.
Hunt has a master’s degree in guitar performance and has won grants through Artist Trust to compose music
The second half of Friday’s concert will feature a multi-media presentation on Latin American guitar music by classical guitarist and renowned scholar Rico Stover.
Stover, who lives in the Methow Valley, has a degree in ethnomusicology and has lived and studied guitar in Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, Paraguay, Puerto Rico and Venezuela. He has performed at music festivals around the world, and was honored in 2013 with a Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award by the Guitar Foundation of America.
Cuban guitarists Edel Muñoz and Isabel Diaz Bello will perform Saturday at 7 p.m. at The Merc Playhouse. As a concert artist, Muñoz has appeared in major recital halls throughout the world, including Carnegie Hall in New York City. He has performed as a soloist and as a chamber musician with orchestras including the Barcelona Sinfonietta, Miami Symphony and Cuba’s National Symphony Orchestra.
Reviewers of Muñoz’s concerts cite his mastery of the guitar and his passionate delivery. Muñoz will be joined in a duo with Diaz Bello, who will also play a solo.
Admission for Friday’s performance is $10 for adults and $5 for students. Saturday’s performance is $15 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets for both performances can be purchased online at brownpapertickets.com or at the door. Call 997-9344 for more information.
A “guitar cabaret” on Sunday at 6 p.m. at Twisp River Suites is the final event of GuitarFest 2015. Rico Stover will be joined by guest artists in a casual and lively night of guitar music spanning many styles including blues, pop, jazz standards, Spanish, Latin American, and original music by Stover.
Light hors d’oeuvres and desserts will be included in the $20 admission. Call 997-0100 for reservations.