Venue: Space Theatre, Adelaide Festival Centre
Season: one performance only
Festival Bookings: BASS 131 241 or http://www.bass.net.au
This could not possibly have been anything but a sell out performance with the line-up of guitarists listed to play for this Grand Finale to the Festival. The Festival’s Artistic Director, Slava Grigoryan, and his brother, Leonard, in their only appearance on stage in the Festival, would have been sufficient to pack the venue to capacity. Adding Jeff Lang, Shane O’Mara, Wolfgang Muthspiel, Doug de Vries, Ben Edgar and Anthony Garcia meant that there was something for just about everybody, and a last chance for even the most organised and dedicated Festival goer to catch anybody that they might have missed.
It was clear from the start that this group of superb musicians could do no wrong, with waves of applause and cheering following every number. There was no let up as artists entered, played, then quickly exited to make way for others. It was almost continual music from start to the reluctant finish. This was a great way to close the Guitar Festival and left the audience looking forward to next year.
It is obvious that Slava Grigoryan’s vision for this year’s Festival, based more in the enormously diverse range of music for the acoustic guitar and not relying almost entirely on the heavy blues/rock genre, attracted a much wider and larger audience and was the biggest success that this Festival has yet had. This is clearly the way to go forward and, having set the Festival on this path, it is to be hoped that it continues to grow and prosper by continuing to offer such a wonderful variety of music.
Reviewed by Barry Lenny, Arts Editor, Glam Adelaide.