Gloucestershire is renowned for being a county steeped in musical history and tradition. With composers such as Holst, Parry and Vaughan Williams having such strong links it is no wonder there is such a rich and diverse musical culture.The guitar has also enjoyed some popularity and recognition; as far back as 1947 there was a group called the Cheltenham Guitar Circle at which Julian Bream gave his debut recital aged 13. He returned to the county on many occasions including 1997 when he gave a recital at the Cheltenham Town Hall.
Guitarists such as Gilbert Biberian have held very successful Summer Schools and Festivals, but in recent times the classical guitar scene has perhaps needed a central base at which like-minded enthuiasts could share the delights of study and performance. Hence the Gloucestershire Guitar Society was formed and is currently looking to recruit a varied membership, fully inclusive to classical guitarists of all stages and ages.
We are also very pleased to have the active support of British guitarist John Mills (Honorary President). John lives in Wiltshire but is no stranger to the county, often performing at venues such as the Stroud Subscription Rooms and The Prince Michael Hall in Cheltenham. In addition to the occasional recital, both solo and duo with his wife Cobie Smit, John along with other visiting artists, will be giving workshops and masterclasses on behalf of the society.
Simon Cartwright (GGS Director) began playing guitar at the age of ten before commencing his studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1983. His many teachers have included Paul Gregory, David Russell, John Mills and Antonio Albanes. He has also participated in masterclasses with Raymond Burley, Robert Brightmore and the late Siegfried Behrend.