Masterclasses

Dave Belcher walks you through ornamentation in J.S. Bach’s music, focusing on common ornaments like trills, grace notes, and mordents, and lesser-used ornaments like turns, slides, arpeggios, and vibrato along with a focus on historical context and baroque performance practice.

Laura Snowden teaches Carcassi Etude 3

Andrew York teaches three of his own compositions: Snowflight, Spider Dance, and Home.

Virtuoso Cuban guitarist, Rene Izquierdo, dives deep into etudes I, V, VI, VII, and VIII from Brouwer Etudes Simples

Gohar Vardanyan walks you through tremolo technique and Francisco Tárrega‘s masterpiece, Recuerdos de la Alhambra. Topics include a technical approach to tremolo; the different musical and technical challenges of Recuerdos; and how to practice tremolo. A performance example is included.

Dr. Noa Kageyama who is a Juilliard professor, violinist, and performance psychologist teaches you how to deal with performance anxiety, what tactics one can take for memorizing music for a performance, how to maintain focus during a performance, and more.

Ben Verdery, professor of guitar at Yale University, walks you through his own composition “Let Go,” which is one of his 11 Etudes. Topics include technical difficulties and how to work through them, ideas for interpretation, and an interview with the composer.

Master luthier Gary Lee guides you through the physical mechanics of the guitar and how you can effectively maintain and set up your instrument to play the way you want it to but also what to look out for when purchasing or commissioning a new instrument. Highly recommended for all guitarists!

CGC Faculty member Kevin Gallagher explores Miguel Llobet’s stunning arrangement of the Catalan folk tune “El Testament d’Amelia”: topics include using rest strokes on the melody (and how best to utilize the rest stroke); separating the melody from the accompaniment; historical details of the piece, and more. A performance walkthrough is included.

In this course world-renowned Lindy Hop dance instructor Evita Powis gives you a full set of stretching routines. Whether you have a lot of time or need a shorter routine these stretches are excellent warmups either before or after your practice sessions.

In this course guitarist Gohar Vardanyan walks you through rasgueado techniques for classical guitarists. Topics include different rasgueado patterns and how to perform them, understanding the sevillanas form and rhythm, applying these techniques to Joaquin Turina’s Sevillanas, and more.

Fred Hand shares insights into his composition “Lesley’s Song.” Topics covered include technical difficulties, such as using the thumb, free and rest stroke, the danger of repeated stress injuries from practicing barre chords, as well as phrasing and interpretation, how to make a musical moment out of a technical difficulty, and more.

The Gavottes from Suite no. 6 for Violoncello by J.S. Bach are light, joyful dances of a typical French baroque character. These lessons cover the historical background of the pieces, some of the technical challenges you’ll encounter along the way, and the musical elements that make up this dance music.

Bartok’s Romanian Dances are full of color and character. This arrangement for violin and guitar provides a challenge for the guitarist bit technically and musically. The characterful style and stunning harmonies in this piece are well worth the effort!

These three Nocturnes represent one of the few classical pieces actually written for the guitar and cello. The pieces range from Grade 5 to Grade 7 in difficulty.

A lyrical gem from Isaac Albeniz, this piece is Grade 8 difficulty and above.