Happy Christmas from hago

Derek Hasted

Christmas 2005

Our Musical Director, Derek Hasted, writes...

On behalf of everyone in hago, I'd like to send you compliments of the season. Whatever your own race, religion or beliefs, please accept our wishes for a joyful Christmas time and a New Year full of rude health, polite friends and inner contentment.

With 2006 around the corner, I want to thank everyone, whether subscribers to our free newsletter or not, who supported our concerts in 2005. We raised the largest amount for charity so far - almost £2000.

The arrival of a second contrabass gave us a fuller sound and we make good use of it!

We said "hello" to two new members and were delighted to welcome back a player too. On the way we changed our alto guitars from Raimundo to Aria / Alegria - story here

It's a tribute to the dedication of our new players that they've worked up 30 pieces to concert standard, and it's a thrill to have brought 5 new pieces to our concerts.

Our memories of playing Schindler's List with Bruce Paine in July will forever be associated with the horror of the London Bombings earlier that day. It became a moving conclusion to a concert of stunning variety.

We featured "Fields of Gold" in a hago / flute / steel guitar ensemble; we thank Lisa Lyster, and more recently Louise Harbert, for their delightful flute playing and for bringing the one thing hago wishes it had... unlimited sustain!

Derek Hasted and caricature - in that order!

The caricature is on the right...
Thanks to Chris for the photo

And that caricature?

Well, we have a "work hard/play hard" philosophy in hago and we brought a hectic year of concerts and charity work to a close with a curry in mid-December, after our final concert. At the end of the meal I was presented with that rather fetching caricature, capturing my wicked grin and slim figure, and setting them off to best effect by combining them with an unusually big head and a hint of that withering glare that I use to consummate effect at rehearsal.

(I was also under strict orders to get the caricature onto the website as a warning to others... Job done!)

But seriously, it's a pleasure to captain the hago team - so many gentle, thoughtful and hard-working people with a common love of guitar.

But the greatest pleasure has been to see so many faces at our concerts light up with smiles of enjoyment.

With 3 concerts for 2006 in planning already and 2 Christmas events pencilled in, we have a busy year ahead. More than anything, we'd like to extend to you a warm welcome at any of our future events.

With best wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from everyone in hago

Derek Hasted - Musical Director