Groeger, Bertrand (Composer)
20 Little Pieces for Classical Guitar
Order No.: ED 22429
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Bertrand Gröger, Progressive Etudes 1 for guitar. Schott ED 22429
Bertarnd says in his foreword, “the chief aim with these little compositions is to draw lovely sounds from the guitar by using the simplest possible techniques.”
Anyone who has ever tried to write easy music will testify that keeping it simple is the biggest challenge. I think the composer has succeeded in his aims, although a student needs to be comfortable with notation before tackling this music. Etude no 1 is in A major and sounds simple – but it maybe doesn’t look simple to the young student.
The early Etudes feature inverted pedal points above lower string melodies so they would be ideal for developing bridging left hand fingers. As we move further into the book, independence of left hand fingers is introduced as is a greater need for double stopping and chord like shapes. The right hand is asked to do arpeggios across 4 strings and there are Etudes to develop damping of unwanted bass notes. Towards the end there are pieces which invite different dynamics between melody and accompaniment where a combination of apoyando and tirando might be the solution. This is indeed progressive and well thought through. The fingering is practical and the fonts and pages are beautifully layed out. Bertrand includes some practise advice too, but I can’t imagine anyone tackling these without a teacher being on hand, so much of this advice will be covered by a conscientious teacher.
The music has some substance in it too; these Etudes will certainly hold the interest of the student long enough for them to develop whichever technique is being invited at the time, and they would be effective pieces to perform in a student’s concert.
This is a welcome addition to repertoire for young students and I recommend this book to teachers. There is enough material here to dip into for a year or so, and I know children will enjoy many of these Etudes.