hago News Archives

Special features



  • Archive news from 2016 is here
  • Latest 2016 news is on the main news page

2016 - related pages



  • Archive news from 2015 is here
  • Latest 2015 news is on the main news page

2015 - related pages

December 2015

Happy Christmas

December 21st

We want to wish all our fans from afar and all our local audiences a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Spend 60 seconds with us - we have put together a little YouTube video.

And if you have a little more time, please visit our 2015 photo gallery.

Pound sign

The total money raised for charity is now £71,273 - thank you everyone who supports our concerts!

October 2015

October 22nd

Pound sign

We've just been totting up some figures - our fund raising total for charity so far has now crosssed £70,000.

Thank you everyone who has come to our concerts - just by coming along, you've been part of this wonderful achievement!

October 9th

From Basingstoke Lions newsletter for September 2015

This was undoubtedly one of the most delightful evening’s entertainment I have ever experienced. And it was very clear from the audience reactions that they felt the same. Ten guitarists played for us on this occasion led, as ever, by their hilariously understated Director, Derek Hasted...
...The audience were completely captivated. While the orchestra played there was not a sound from them. I had a look around and the facial expressions were a mixture of rapt attention and silly grins, with the latter predominating. The whole programme was a marvellous mix of tunes from the last three centuries alternating the truly beautiful with real toe tappers. It was a super performance which didn't hit a single bum note.
The members of the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra are lovely people. They have raised over £65000 for charity and they helped us to a net profit of £740 for our evening. They are looking for other guitarists to join them, so why not check them out on their website www.hago.org.uk/ . You can also see and hear them performing on Youtube. Enjoy!

Read the whole review here

September 2015

September 27th

HAGO at Basingstoke

Our concert for Basingstoke Lions last night raised £740 for charities in the Basingstoke Area - thank you to everyone who came along and supported the evening. What a fantastic audience you were!

The organiser writes "Very many thanks to you and all the players for last evening's splendid concert. "

There are photos at the foot of our 2015 gallery.

September 26th

Not excited by the prospect of watching 80 minutes of men running around tonight playing rugby?

Then come along to our concert tonight at Queen Mary's Hall Basingtoke, and watch 90 minutes of hago's men and women entertaining you with our unique selection of music. You'll be helping Basingstoke Lions raise what we hope is another substantial sum for local charities! Details here

Arne and Debra

September 18th

Last night was our dress rehearsal for our Basingstoke concert on Saturday September 26th. Wow - another evening of solid sounds, cunning countermelodies and fantastic fun.

Our surprise guests who are playing with us at Basingstoke have quickly got into the hago way of not taking things too seriously!

There's a larger photo in our 2015 photo gallery.

September 2nd

Where HAS the summer gone? Indeed, did the summer ever come?

Well, the nights are (sadly) starting to draw in, but we reckon that makes the whole idea of going out to an indoor venue for a fun evening seem more appealing.

And on September 26th we've been booked to return to Queen Mary Hall QMC Basingstoke, for a full evening's music, mirth and fund-raising for our great friends the Basingstoke Lions.

If you belong to Facebook, please help us publicise the event. All you have to do is...

  • Visit the event on Facebook
  • Share it on your News Feed or in a Private Message to friends.
  • Ask them to share it too - that's the thing that gets the word out - reaching people we don't know!

Let's get the word out!

May 2015


May 31st

Do you keep forgetting to call back here to read the news?

Why not subscribe to our newsletter - we send about 6 issues a year, normally when there's a concert coming up - it'll keep you in touch for less effort!


Read the current newsletter here...


There's a sign-up box further down this page - it's all automatic - send your email address and you'll get a confirmation email.

St George's Waterlooville

May 31st

The Waterlooville Music Fastival is coming soon.

We're playing on Thursday 18th in the evening - more details on our concert page, together with a link to the Festival website- there are concerts every lunchtime and every evening for an entire week!

Petersfield Festival Hall

Sorry it's taken so long!

Our concert for the Petersfield Lions on April 11th has raised £3,800 for good causes - what an amazing total.

The total will be split between The Lions and the Petersfield Town Mayor, so that a wide variety of good causes will benefit.

Thank you for helping to make the evening such a success


May 1st

Curely that can't be a bucketload of ketchup at our rehearsal last night?

Yes it is, and if you scroll to the bottom of our 2015 gallery, you'll find that there was more than just ketchup on the table.

April 2015

Johannes Dimyadi and his orchestra

April 14th

We've just heard that Johannes Dimyadi and his children's orchestra were playing hago's arrangement of Danza Cubana over in New Zealand, a day or so away from when we were playing it in Petersfield! There's a larger photo at the foot of our 2015 gallery.

HAGO at Petersfield

April 12th

We really enjoyed our concert last night at Petersfield Festival Theatre, raising money for Petersfield Lions and Petersfield Mayor's appeal.

We'll post the fundraising total here as soon as we have it.

We have added just over half a dozen photos to our 2015 photo gallery - click and scrolll down to see them.

April 5th

Happy Easter to all our Fans and Followers, here, on Facebook and on Twitter.

Hoping to see some of you at our massive "Combined Concert" in Petersfield on April 11th - details here...

March 2015

HAGO Newsletter

March 23rd

We've just sent out another of our occasional newsletters.

If you'd like to receive one in your Inbox as soon as we publish, simply complete your details in the box which is on the right (Tablet and Desktop users), or at the foot of this page (Phone users), and magic will happen...

March 23rd

We played a Private Booking last Thursday at Homewater House. We played there last October, and clearly word has got round, because the audience doubled in size for this one. The residents held a retiring collection in aid of the British Heart Foundation.

It brings our total raised for charity to £65,476

March 10th

Booking details for our shared concert at Petersfield Festival Hall on April 11th are now on our concerts page - 3 acts - a massive concert - all for charity.

March 6th

We're back in print!

HAGO in print

Postcode Publications ran a feature on us - check out their current edition, free from most Shopping Centres

February 2015

HAGO Birthday

February 20th

Last night was the rehearsal closest to our birthday - we're 16 years old this year.

It wouldn't be a birthday without cake - visit our 2015 gallery to see the guitar cake that Viv baked for us - all lemony and lovely!

February 19th

Brrrr! It's still cold here in Hampshire, and we're still not ready to start playing in Churches again - we're sure you can see why. But we do have a fair number of concerts booked now - why not click on our concerts page and see when we're playing near you...

January 2015

January 20th

There's not a lot of news - we're hibernating during the winter. Actually, that's not true, we're busy rehearsing for our 2015 season and also starting to recruit new players, as you'll see from our slightly updated home page.



  • A fantastic year with some spectacular concert venues
  • Our website became "mobile-friendly" as more and more browsing is done on portable devices
  • We put up more videos on YouTube, including our "channel video" which is shown when people visit for a list of videos - showing some behind the scenes photos!

2014 - related pages

December 2014

Happy Christmas

December 20th

We want to wish all our fans from afar and all our local audiences a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Spend 60 seconds with us - we have put together a little YouTube video.

And if you have a little more time, please visit our 2014 photo gallery.

Carols & Curries

December 20th

We had a super evening two days ago, with our now-traditional trip down to Portsmouth to play Carols and Concert music to a wonderful audience of residents at one of the Sheltered Accommodation complexes.

And afterwards we moved from Carols to Curries & Chillies, with food and drink, and more food, and more drink, back at our Musical Director's house.

November 2014

Lathkill Music Publications

November 30th

Derek, our Musical Director was more than a little bit delighted and humbled to receive a septet from Steve Marsh of Lathkill Music Publications which is dedicated to him and presented with the words

"I have always enjoyed your reviews (*) and admire your dedication to ensemble playing"

(*) Derek reviews ensemble music for Classical Guitar Magazine.


November 11th

Derek, our Musical Director has added another "one-page technical teach-in" to his website.

These "mini-masterclasses" are one-page introductions to topics that don't often feature in most guitar tutor books.

The most recent topic is about "Campanella". It that's not a guitar technique that's familiar to you, click on through.

You can read the whole series on his FAQs page

hago newsletter

November 1st

We've just sent out a new "hago newsletter" to our worldwide subscribers.

If you'd like to subscribe (we send about 5-6 newsletters a year), visit our Social Networking page and fill in your name and email address - you'll get an email asking you to confirm and then you're on board.

  • It's free
  • Your email address won't be sold or given away
  • It's as interesting as we can make it
  • It's about 6 newsletters a year

And yes, those are ears.

And that is a bowler hat.

hago - showing the world that music isn't to be listened to in total silence - it's for enjoying.

October 2014

Fund raising news

October 26th

Following on from our House Concert in for the residents at Homewater House, we've learned that the audience enjoyed it so much that they raised £66 for a charity of their choice when the hat went round at the end of the evening. We really enjoyed playing for them and we've been invited back, so it seems they really enjoyed it too. It was such fun when they all sang along to some of our pieces!

Our fund-raising total for local charities now tops £64700

September 2014

September 30th

Work continues to try to make the principal pages of our website easier to use on mobile phones, but one side effect is that this page might get flagged as having been changed when actually it's the gubbins behind the scenes that's altered, not the content!

HAGO Cheese Straws

September 28th

Our concert last night was really fun!

We met a young guitarist there, and by the time we got home, we had a post on our Facebook page...

Thank you for a fantastic evening of incredible guitar playing. We now have two very tired children but they enjoyed themselves very much (especially Calum - you have sparked his enthusiasm again after a long break from his lessons over the summer). Many thanks. Hope to see you again sometime soon.

We've heard that we raised about £400 for their building fund - exact figure soon.

We've put some photos from last night in our 2014 gallery - scroll right to the bottom!

September 21st

It's going to be a long job but we're starting to try to make the hago website a little more "mobile-friendly" for those who visit via smartphone. Not a lot to show for our efforts yet, but stay tuned!

September 20th

We're saddened to no longer be support partners of Portsmouth Music Hub, but we are regrettably not in a position to pay out of our own funds to provide music for them, and we have not been able to identify anyone coming to our concerts directly because of the Music Hub. We wish them well - they are doing a great job for Portsmouth Children.

September 9th

Over the weekend we migrated our occasional newsletters from the old "handraulic" system to something a little more elegant. Mobile friendly too - our newsletter is now easier to read on hand-held devices.

You can subscribe to it by filling in your email address on our Social Networks page

August 2014

Join HAGO!

August 30th - calling all Classical Guitarists - hago wants to know if you want to join us - check out our "behind the scenes" video to see how much fun we have!

We're looking for guitarists who are Grade 4-5 standard or above, and who want to be part of a long-established group that always makes their family-friendly concerts are real evening out for the audience.

Read more about joining us here...

August 10th - it's always quiet for hago in the month of August - we're too busy building sandcastles and wearing our Kiss-me-Quick hats to get together to rehearse, but we're meeting up soon, and getting ready for our concert on September 27th, which, we notice from the St Johns Church Website, is at midnight. We're unsure whether that's midnight at the start of September 27th or the end, but whichever it is, we'll also be playing at 7:30 in the evening!

August 10th - on our Facebook page today - "Saw them in concert in Basingstoke earlier this year and they are brilliant".

July 2014

July 8th - we've heard today that our concert last Saturday raised £580 towards Hayling Island's presence at the World Scout Jamboree - a fantastic total - thank you to everyone who came along .... it was you that raised this magnificent sum.

Our total raised for good causes is now £64,271!

July 6th - great concert down on Hayling last night...
The sound of leather on willow outside - the cricket team were playing a leisurely game well into the evening.
The sound of flesh on cedar inside (well, strictly speaking, it was more "nail on nylon", but that doesn't sound as poetic).

Lovely weather, lovely audience.

Concert feedback includes

As always they played amazingly

We drove an hour to get there - so glad we did

Fantastic evening

We'll let you know the fund-raising total as soon as we have it.

June 2014

June 8th - we're busy rehearsing for our July 5th concert (booking details here) - it'll be great to return to Hayling Island again - our third visit there, if we're not mistaken. It's a good-sized venue - it'll accommodate 250 maximum - so we do hope you'll be able to come along. There are excellent pubs nearby for a pre-concert tipple, or you might like to sample Fish and Chips on the sea-front before enjoying our varied and exciting programme with pieces from all eras of hago's 100+ concerts.

May 2014

May 15th - on Monday, Jenny (one of our "guitar & bass" players) nipped over to Radio Solent to broadcast an appeal - we're looking for Classical Guitarists to join us. Hear it here.... Scroll to 2:10 in. Available on the BBC website till Sunday May 18th

April 2014

The Fund-Raising Chairman of Basingstoke Lions has written to us about our concert on March 29th...

I just wanted to say thank you for the guitar orchestra's set on Saturday, everyone had a great evening and the feedback has been excellent, all that I spoke to thought the playing was superb.

It has also been a financial success for the Lions and on first count looks to have raised just over £1,000 all of which will be put to great use.

I hope to see you again in the future.

March 2014

March 31st - was it a Mobile Phone, a Morris Dancer, or Santa Claus in our recent concert?

You decide - Paysage Iberique, Luc Levesque, arr for hago by Derek Hasted

hago in Basingstoke

March 30th - what a lovely, lovely audience at our concert in Basingstoke yesterday, for Basingstoke Lions and also featuring Basingstoke Rock Choir.

We will post the fund-raising total here as soon as we have it.

There are a selection of photos from yesterday in our 2014 gallery which you can access by clicking here...

March 18th - we've just heard that after the costs of the magnificent complimentary interval refreshments were deducted, the final fund-raising total at last Saturday's concert for the Cornerstone Outreach appeal was £280

Our Total raised for local good causes is now £62,687

HAGO in Hythe

March 16th - we had a ball at Hythe URC - Cornerstone - last night, raising funds for their Outreach project.

Concert comments included

It was fantastic!

What a fantastic ensemble at your concert last night in Hythe on the edge of the New Forest

Delightful concert on Saturday. Many thanks to all the orchestra

We've put a selection of photos in our 2014 gallery.

Click here to visit the gallery

HAGO in Dorset

March 2nd - it was a privilege to play for such an enthusiastic audience last night at Dorset Guitar Society.

Feedback includes

"Thoroughly enjoyed your programme, superb performance and jolly jokes. A brilliant evening with you. Thanks "


"...it was certainly a super concert..."

Scroll to March 2014 in our gallery to see 2 photos

February 2014

February 25th - we'll be raising a glass later this evening - hago is 15 years old today!

hago at Eastleigh

February 20th - we've added photos from our concert on February 6th to our gallery

The fund-raising total raised for the Mayor's Appeal was £588, split between the Marie Curie Cancer Care charity and Eastleigh Young Carers.

It brings our fund-raising total to £62,356

February 7th - The Point was a lovely venue for our concert last night.

Audience feedback included...

Congratulations on an excellent evenings entertainment from Marie Curie Fundraising Hampshire and Isle of Wight. I was there as a volunteer representing Marie Curie, Malcolms chosen charity for his Mayorship. Only sorry I was unable to thank you personally as I was helping look after our guests. Sure you will go from strength to strength. Your support for our charity is much appreciated.

BRILLIANT EVENING - as always.. thank you all for venturing out in the awful weather & giving us such an enjoyable time!!

January 2014

January 1st - Happy New Year everyone - we start the year having raised £61767 for local good causes since hago started, way back in 1999.

As 2013 drew to a conclusion, we learned that our videos were seen over 17,000 times in 2013.

Our first concert is on February 6th, and right now our Musical Director is working up an arrangement of another piece that you have probably heard lots of times, but never on guitar....


2013 - a summary...

  • We were booked to return to several venues we'd played in earlier years
  • We added three more pieces to our repertoire
  • We added four more videos to our YouTube channel

2013 - related pages

December 2013

December 25th

Happy Christmas from all of hago to all of you - may 2014 be a wonderful year for you all; we hope to see some of you at a concert or two in 2014!

December 20th

So what happens when the audience only knows 3 words of a Christmas piece? This does - recorded at our Carol Concert last night at a Sheltered Housing Complex in central Portsmouth.
We couldn't get the microphone positioned well so it's mainly top and bottom and no middle!

November 2013

November 26th

The organiser of our November 23rd concert writes...

Just a note to thank you and the rest of the HAGO for giving us such a wonderful concert on Saturday. Peter and I thoroughly enjoyed the performance and thought the programme of music a really nice mix ... We have had some good positive feedback.

You will be interested and pleased to know that we cleared £470 for Friends of Boundaries Surgery and we were very happy with that. A tremendous result in the end so thank you for all your help in achieving this.

We really appreciate you playing for us and giving up your Saturday evening - specially on a Dr Who night!

Thank you once again and very best wishes with your forthcoming concerts and future fundraising.

November 12th

Great news - our concert on November 9th raised £585 for The Listening Place - a busy counselling service in Salisbury. To those who came along, thank you so much for helping raise this fantastic amount.

November 9th

We heard today that our concert for Off The Record raised £959 after expenses - what a MAGNIFICENT total - thank you for coming along and supporting it. Visit their website if you were unable to come to our concert but want to support them - you can donate online.

October 2013

October 23rd

Feedback from our concert on Saturday from the Organiser...

Hello Derek and the wonderful guitar players of HAGO, What an amazing concert you gave in aid of Off The Record on Saturday. It was a full house. I will let you know very soon the total amount raised. Good luck with your future concerts - you do a cracking job entertaining and with on-going fundraising for worthwhile charities across the south. Keep up the good work.
Best wishes to all, Tina

October 20th

It was lovely to see so many people at our concert in aid of Off The Record last night - we will keep you updated with the fund-raising total.

August 2013

August 15th - from Good Vibrations, the West Sussex Guitar Club newsletter, received today and writing about our June concert there...

...We heard a whole spectrum of types of music, ranging from Dvorak to Status Quo, from 42nd Street to an exciting Cuban Dance and from the Beatles to Elizabethan music...

...it was a most appropriate way to end the season with such a light evening of music and humour which was greatly enjoyed by both the audience and performers alike. We all eagerly await their return.

See also the comments we posted here on June 16th

August 11th - we've just updated our concerts page with booking information for our October 19th concert in aid of Off The Record, which provides confidential support for young people.

Portsmouth Music Hub has encouraged the promoter to offer "Kids for a quid" tickets for under-14s, so we're looking forward to meeting lots of new faces at our family friendly evening.

July 2013

Anna and Gill

July 5th - last night we said Au Revoir to two of our team - Anna and Gill.

We presented them with personalised photo albums of their time in hago - see more in our 2013 gallery, right down the bottom, where there's a photo of the new team that's going to carry us forward.

The fantastic news, though, is that Anna and Gill are now hago alumni and are returning to play in our October 19th concert - how lovely is that?

June 2013

Tony the teapot

June 30th - we had the most fantastic concert yesterday up Cambridge, thanks to our hosts Cambridge Guitar Orchestra.

There's too much to tell in the space we have here, but you can be sure that there really is a connection between...
Hotel California, mustard, two fictitious French composers, a member of hago that we had to shoot, Bayko, a hen party in a lift, a broken tooth, cranberry juice, some badly positioned cheese and the lock on a toilet door that didn't live up to its name.

We've put some photos up (don't be alarmed, the toilet doesn't feature in the photos!) - see them here.

The Rose (Bette Midler, Westlife)

June 26th - We've uploaded another video to our YouTube channel...

Amanda McBroom's The Rose - a video inspired by the serendipity of our playing of The Rose at West Sussex Guitar Club on June 15th, and their Artistic Director's lovely presentation of a red rose to each of our female pluckers.

You'll find it (and those mentioned below) on our "Audio & Video page" - all the most recent uploads are at the top of the video page.

HAGO at West Sussex Guitar Club

June 20th - We've uploaded three more videos to our YouTube channel...

Frederic Bayco's Elizabethan Masque

Ruiz-Pipo's Danza

Palladio by Karl Jenkins

You'll find these and more on our "Audio & Video page" - all the most recent uploads are at the top of the video page.

HAGO at WEst Sussex Guitar Club

June 16th - we really enjoyed playing a concert for West Sussex Guitar Club last night - a packed house and raising £167 for their club funds. It brings our fund-raising total to £58,785

There's a larger photo in our gallery

Audience feedback included

"Brilliant concert Derek and HAGO - enjoyed every minute. By the way, that beautiful old guitar belonging to Brian Whitehouse that we spoke about in the interval is a Santos Hernandez"

"Hi Derek, Thank you for the great evening. It was certainly a memorable evening."

"Many thanks for a most enjoyable concert this evening."

"What a fantastic evening with the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra (HAGO). Looking forward to listening to them again soon."

"Just wanted to drop you a line to say thanks to you and the orchestra for a really enjoyable concert. As I mentioned to you during the interval the acoustics were so much clearer than at Farnham - the acoustics and intimacy were such you could hear all the individual instruments, the twiddly bits, the harmonies and the crescendo's really did crescend!!"

"Many thanks for a most enjoyable concert - wonderful light music superbly played (& arranged) & a lot of fun for both audience & orchestra."

"Had a really fun evening at the Regis School of Music - Thanks HAGO"

May 2013

S&G Richmond

May 18th - We played a concert today for the residents at the Royal Star and Garter Homes Richmond - our fifth and final concert there (the Home is closing and moving to a new purpose-built facility nearby).

It's been the most amazing privilege to play to some amazing people. All disabled, all such lovely people.

We bet there aren't many guitarists who've played to someone who is 106 years old. We have!

Visit our gallery page - scroll down for some photos behind the scenes!

May 1st - We've learned today that our Farnham concert raised £490 for the Performers Together appeal (read more by visiting their website) - if you came along, thank you helping raise our fund-raising total to £58616

April 2013

It was lovely to play to an audience of a hundred at St Andrews Farnham a couple of days ago.

Concert comments included...

"I don't know if you noticed saw me, but I was the on the second row, with a contented smile on my face, absolutely enraptured! All your guitarists were spot on, led by a terrific maestro. "

"What a wonderful concert tonight in Farnham. You are an amazing group of guitarists. We thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you, very much."

March 2013

31st March - Happy Easter to everyone!

Bedhampton Concert - October 2012

17th March - Our Bedhampton concert last October has featured in the local PO9 newspaper, which is delivered to households in the Havant and Bedhampton area.

Farnham Concert - April 20th 2013

12th March - "Performers Together", who are the promoters of our concert in Farnham on April 20th, have released a poster for our forthcoming concert. Why not pre-book and save £2 a ticket.

See more about the concert in our concerts page

HAGO in The NewsHAGO in The News

4th March - we're featured on pages 2 and 19 of today's Portsmouth News

See more in our 2013 gallery

February 2013

25th February - hago is 14 years old today!

22nd February - things are starting to happen!

There are plenty of new photos in our gallery. The 2013 photos have one common characteristic - they're all about food and not music! Our 14th birthday is on Monday, and so we celebrated at the closest rehearsal - yesterday.

January 2013

Danzon No 2 - Marquez

January 9th - Our fund-raising total has risen to £58,127

Our Danzon Video has become our most popular video in the last 3 months - why not take a look if you've not seen it yet.

January 1st - Happy New Year from everyone here in hago - may your 2013 be every bit as rewarding as you hope it will be. We hope to see many of you at our forthcoming concerts (details coming up soon).


2012 - a summary...

  • We celebrated our 100th concert, with special guests Cambridge Guitar Orchestra - see our special feature
  • We added another 12 videos to our YouTube channel
  • We played the magnificent Kings Theatre for the first time

2012 - related pages

December 2012

Happy Christmas!


Enjoy our little montage of happy memories from 2012 - a year which saw us playing concerts in Milford on Sea, Portsmouth, Southsea and many other local venues.

Our concerts this year bring our total raised for charity to over £58,000 and we'd like to thank everyone who came along and supported our fund-raising and helped spread the word about us!

HAGO at The Kings Southsea

December 19th

This morning we received a DVD from Steve Hewlett, the ventriloquist who organised and starred in the Loyal Variety Performance at The Kings Theatre Southsea.

Steve has given us permission to extract the video from our performance, and today we've uploaded our closing item, "Woman" by John Lennon, which Steve asked us to play in memory of Joyce Brown, a lovely lady and an enthusiastic fund-raiser for The Kings Restoration fund.

November 2012

November 3rd - Our local newspaper is the Portsmouth News.

The News's Guide Awards are out, and if you've enjoyed us in concert, please put us down as the readers' nomination in the Classical Music section. Here's the article, and there's a link for nominations near the bottom. We appreciate your help!

November 2nd - fame (but no fortune) - we're playing the opening and closing music on this video... (well, not the very first bit, obviously!)

November 1st - we've added yet more to the foot of our 2012 gallery

October 2012

Loyal Variety Performance

October 27th - The Loyal Variety Show last night at the Kings Theatre Southsea was the most amazing night out. The evening was hosted by Steve Hewlett and an array of puppet dummies, and Karen Dalton, who appeared as Nan and quite scared the pants off some of us backstage!

Steve put together a fantastic mix of comedy, singing, dancing and magic.

It was a fantastic thrill for us to be asked to open the second act, including a tribute Steve asked us to play for fund-raiser Joyce Brown, in whose memory the entire evening was dedicated.

Over £2000 was raised, to be split between the Portsmouth Brain Tumour charity and the Kings Restoration fund.

See a couple of back stage photos at the bottom of our 2012 gallery

October 24th - from the Twittersphere - Steve Hewlett (@ventriloquist29) tweets...

‏Amazing Acts giving their time @KingsSouthsea Friday 7pm in Loyal Variety @karendalton @andrewvanburen @HagoGuitar @Manic_SP @glennmford...

Come along - starts 7pm at The Kings Southsea on Friday - over 20 acts - all for charity!

October 22nd - Some late and very welcome donations bring our October 13th fund-raising total to £740.80 - a simply fantastic sum, made possible by our lovely and enthusiastic audience.

Next chance to see us is as part of the massive Loyal Variety Performance at The Kings Theatre Southsea on Friday October 26th

October 20th - We've just been featured on Angel Radio, Havant's nostalgia radio station, which you can listen to on the Internet if you're outside the Havant area.

hago in Bedhampton

October 15th - We've put three videos from Saturday's concert onto our Music and Video page.

They're not quite as pin-sharp as we'd like, but if you were unable to come to the concert, it will give you a taster of what went on...

hago in Bedhampton

October 14th - our new show "Plucked From Thin Air" took to the stage (well, the floor, actually!) in Bedhampton yesterday.
Hosted by Havant Rotary Club, the evening raised £705.80 for the charity Canine Partners - thank you to everyone who came and supported our performance. What a fantastic audience - by the end of the evening, we had people clapping with the hands above their heads! We welcomed local Artist Bethany Moore who had some dog-inspired drawings and paintings for sale.

It brings our total raised for charitable causes to over £58,000.

Have a listen to one of the items in the concert here...

October 2nd - our concert in Hythe 10 days ago raised £478 for their Outreach fund - thank you to everyone who came and supported our performance!

It brings our total raised for charitable causes to over £57,300

September 2012

HAGO in Hythe

September 23rd - what a lovely (and large) audience at our concert in Hythe yesterday.

Audience feedback included


Really enjoyed the concert

Highly impressed

There's a photo of our soundcheck at the bottom of our 2012 gallery

We raised £478 for their Outreach fund - thank you to everyone who came and supported our performance!

It brings the total raised for charitable causes to over £57,300

Long Service

September 22nd - We're delighted to present Gill with a Bronze long service award

Well done Gill!

September 7th - our first get-together after the summer was partly business and partly pleasure!
There are two photos at the bottom of our 2012 gallery page.

August 2012

August 24th - nothing's certain in life except death and taxes, so what we're about to say may not happen. But there's a good chance that we'll be playing a few pieces at a ventriloquist's stage show soon. Watch this space!

August 7th - we've found a pirated copy of our video of Fields of Gold on YouTube - taken without our permission. Our original is at this link.

August 5th - We're on our summer break now, but it gives us the chance to catch up on some left-over jobs. Like telling you that our fund-raising total has now reached £56,824.

Like everyone else in the country, the recession has hit our concerts too. It's meant that the money we've raised for charity in this academic year is 12% down on the same period last year, but we're delighted that so many people came along and enjoyed our concerts despite the positively bleak financial situation that affects us all - thank you!

July 2012

July 9th - Havant Women's Aid, who we supported at our recent 100th concert have written...

I would like to thank you for your kind generosity and wonderful financial donation. The money which you have donated has been greatly appreciated...

They've asked us to announce that on July 1st they have a new name (Southern Domestic Abuse Service) and a new website.

July 8th - our concert in Richmond yesterday was our last before the Summer. We returned to the Royal Star and Garter home to play a morning concert for some of the severely disabled residents there, presenting a programme of pieces including such familiar tunes as "A Nightingale Sang In Berkeley Square", the theme from "Dick Barton Special Agent" and other evocative tunes. We love playing there, it's such a moving and uplifting atmosphere and one of the most special concerts in our calendar.

June 2012

June 30th - our YouTube channel has never been busier - we're serving over 100 videos a day, and our new Danzon video, which has been on YouTube in two guises, has already been viewed over 350 times in under 6 days.

HAGO's 100th concert

June 29th - comments from our 100th concert...

"What a fantastic evening we had at HAGOs' 100th concert - in Portsmouth. Thanks to you all"

"HAGO's offering was excellent. We both thoroughly enjoyed it!"

"Very slick - superb!"

"A fabulous evening - great music & entertaining leadership"

We've added another video - see right - to celebrate our special concert. Click here to hear hago play "When the Guitar Sings", by Guy Bergeron, arranged for hago by Derek Hasted. The composer has seen the video and describes it as "wonderful".

Joke book

June 28th - and why, you are probably wondering, is there a photo of a pith helmet and a joke book on a guitar orchestra website?

If you're asking, you've probably never been to a joint Hampshire and Cambridge Guitar Orchestra concert!

Visit our "hago 100th concert page" and discover a little more about what goes on behind the scenes when Hampshire Guitar Orchestra meet Cambridge Guitar Orchestra and the gloves come off...

June 27th - Our cPith helmetoncert on Saturday helped raise funds for Havant Women's Aid. Thank you for coming along - you've helped lift our fundraising total to a new high of £56,523

We have some rather shaky videos from our 100th concert two days ago - the picture is shaky, but the sound is solid - please have a listen...

Danzon No 2

Danzon No 2 - Marquez arr Hasted

Woman - Lennon

Woman - Lennon arr Hasted

More videos here....

HAGO at St George's Portsea

June 24th - we had a great time last night at our 100th concert yesterday

Audience comments included

What a fantastic evening we had at HAGOs' 100th concert - in Portsmouth. Thanks to you all

HAGO's offering was excellent. We both thoroughly enjoyed it!

June 23rd - 100th concert this evening, and my goodness the hago website is serving pages like they are going out of fashion!

HAGO in the news

June 22nd - we're sure you don't need reminding that it's our 100th concert tomorrow, but our local newspaper is firing on all cylinders at the moment, as you can see.

You'll find maps, travel information and more about the concert on our special 100th concert page which you can click through to here.

You can sit at ground level or up on the top deck!

June 20th - our local newspaper have done us proud - our 100th concert on Saturday is featured here...

June 16th - our Monday 11th June performance is featured in the Mayor of Havant's Blog...

June 14th - "Amazing virtuosity..."

From the Portsmouth News website this morning

The mayor of Havant, Councillor Gerald Shimbart, has praised Monday evening’s show which saw Hampshire clarinet and saxophone choirs perform with Hampshire Guitar Orchestra.
Cllr Shimbart said: ‘In the first half the youngsters played with energy and expression producing a vigorous and varied programme.
‘ The virtuosity of the Hampshire guitar orchestra was amazing and the patter was hilarious.’

We're reliably informed that anyone who's anyone has a twitter account. So we've got one. Now we need some followers to help us share our (occasional) tweets. Go on, press the button, we dares ya!

June 12th - it was a real fun concert last night thanks to the hardworking team at Waterlooville Music Festival - what a great bunch of folks!

Concert feedback includes...

"a truly enjoyable evening"
" high quality playing"
" brilliant"


June 9th - you're invited to celebrate with us at our 100th concert...

Read more and see photos from 2002 to 2011 on our Invitation page.

Put the date in your diary - June 23rd.

Come by car or train - it's a fantastically convenient and lovely venue!

June 6th - our good friends in our local Guitar Societies (visit our links page for clickable links) are being very supportive of our 100th concert! If you're new to guitar, why not check out their own events pages, where you can read about an eclectic mix of concerts from a wide range of artists, all experts on Classical Guitar....

June 2nd - we heard late yesterday that our concert in Milford On Sea on 26th May raised £678.19 for Naomi House Children's Hospice!

The organiser writes

Thank you so much for Saturday, it was absolutely brilliant, and I have only heard good things.
Once again thank you so much, it really was a fun night.

It brings our fundraising for charity to £56,468 - thank you for your part in reaching this fantastic total.

Check our concerts page for our future concert dates!

Hampshire Guitar Orchestra on YouTube

June 2nd - hago's YouTube channel is the busiest it's been for over a year!

You'll find a real mixture of videos, with footage of hago and footage of some of the glorious Hampshire scenery.

And you'll find a trailer for our June 23rd Concert - our 100th concert! We're playing in a delightful venue close to Portsmouth Harbour Railway station.

May 2012

HAG concert in Portsmouth

May 30th - we've put a trailer up on YouTube for our concert on June 23rd - it's our 100th concert, believe it or not!

More about our 100th celebrations soon, but put the date in your diary and come along - it's part of the Portsmouth Festivities!

You'll find directions to the venue on our concerts page.

Tickets are £7.50 for adults, but it's "kids a quid"!

Hampshire Guitar Orchestra in Milford On Sea

May 27th - fantastic audience last night - it was great to meet so many new faces.

As always, we will post the fundraising total on this page as soon as we're told how much we raised for Naomi House Children's Hospice.

Here's a thumbnail preview of a new photo in our 2012 gallery, taken last night.

May 26th - concert tonight! Is the heat getting to you - come along tonight to the New Forest - we have a cool spacious venue at Milford on Sea. You can come early and picnic in the Forest, or go for paddle in the sea. Then come to our concert at 7:30 in All Saints Church Milford, and enjoy gentle music, a cool environment and refreshments at half time. Tickets on the door are £10, and it's all in aid of Naomi House, the Hampshire Children's Hospice. Come early for the best seats! Maps here...

May 13th - what's happened to all the news? You're probably wondering why there's been so little hago news of late, but it's quite simple...

We've been in a quiet spell because of Easter, but in that time lots of things have happened behind the scenes and it's time to reveal some of them...

  • We've expanded our repertoire to include two new pieces, and we're looking at resurrecting a third because of public demand
  • You'll hear at least one of these at our concert in Portsmouth on June 23rd - part of the Portsmouth Festivities
  • We've uploaded a montage of stills and videos from last year's Portsmouth Festivities, accompanied, of course, by hago playing "Portsmouth"
  • Derek Hasted, our Musical Director, has added four very charming little guitar solos - just the sort of music he teaches in his one-to-one lessons - to his own YouTube Channel
  • We've sent out another newsletter to our subscribers
  • We have a full-length concert on May 26th in aid of Naomi House children's Hospice, in the simply fantastic venue of Milford on Sea.

April 2012

April 1st

Derek, our Musical Director, has set up a YouTube channel to support his one-to-one guitar lessons - the aim of the channel is to demonstrate the sort of music that his students will be able to manage. Curious? Visit Derek Hasted's Guitar Channel on YouTube

March 2012

March 29th - it's taken a while to learn of the fundraising total for our concert on March 15th, but today we heard that we raised £648 for the Rowans Hospice. If you came along, a big "Thank You" for helping raise that amazing total.

Hampshire Guitar Orchestra win three cups

March 5th - yesterday was the Portsmouth Music Festival Guitar day and four of the hago team competed in a total of three sections - two duet classes and a quartet class.

We're delighted to show you the attached photo - three cups, including one for the best performance of the entire day.

The adjudicator was very complimentary on the quality of the phrasing and togetherness, and that musicality is one of hago's fundamental tenets; we hope you'll come to our concert on March 15th and enjoy an entire evening devoted to ensemble music in a great variety of styles.

March 3rd - hope you can come to our concert on March 15th - here's a preview...

March 3rd - Come and meet the new team - new photos here...

February 2012

Happy Birrthday

February 25th - hago is 13 today!

Yes, hago is now a teenager, and rebelling against strait-laced concerts!

Come along to our next concert, on Thursday March 15th and hear a compelling mix of musical styles.

Dvorak meets Elton John and our music extends from the UK to Europe and the Americas.

February 19th - we have another new player and another new piece! Our next concert is on March 15th - do come if you can.

January 2012

January 6th - our first rehearsal of 2012 last night saw us dusting down another piece from a very long time ago - we look forward to playing you our much revised concert programme soon!

January 5th - our local newspaper has once again told its readership that we play ukuleles. We had kind of hoped that our name was a clue to what we play!

January 2nd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

January 1st - Happy New Year from all of us in hago - may 2012 be a peaceful and (as far as it's possible!) a prosperous one for all our website visitors.


2011 - a summary...

  • We used YouTube to set up some video shorts advertising some of our concerts
  • Some of the hago team ran in the Race for Life
  • Our website served its five millionth page
  • We shared a second concert with Southampton Flute group Flautissimo

2011 - related pages

December 2011

December 20th - Happy Christmas from all of us in hago - view our Christmas Card

December 20th - we are delighted to report that our Christmas Concert at St Cuthbert's Church raised £483 for their appeal. Our charity total is now £55109!

December 10th - It was lovely to play in the newly refurbished Church at St Cuthbert's last night, but it was bad luck that the evening was the coldest this autumn. Brrr!

November 2011

November 6th - we met for rehearsal on November 3rd and it was another time for celebration - two of our players were presented with Long Service Awards - Lisa for 100 attendances - that's over 5 years - and Avril for 200. You can see photos on our Long Service Page.

November 3rd - we heard today that our Salisbury concert on 15th October raised £395 for The Listening Place. If you came along, thank you for helping raise funds for this very deserving cause. The concert brings our fund-raising total to £53698.

November 2nd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

  • British word for gardener - it's, er, gardener! (Actual page since moved)
  • Do I make a guitar strong tigher to? - well, it's not something we've ever tried...
  • Don't panic requinto guitar - the Dad's Army approach to different sizes of guitar
  • G sharp in the bass - yes, it's not unknown
  • It's his round t-shirt - we prefer our T-shirts to be roughly rectangular
  • Pin on the seat - no, we really have been there, done that, got the photo...
  • Soprano size guitar - well actually, none of our guitars are 6 foot tall with a generous embonpoint
  • Soundhold back of guitar - we rather like the soundhold - a large space full of sound that we can transport to concerts and let out
  • Which words go with country - "and western"
  • Words of encouragement gardening - "What a nice pear"
  • www.what is the english word of garden - www.we think it mmm.might be "garden"

October 2011

October 25th - Audience feedback from our Salisbury concert includes..."Really enjoyed the concert"
We'll post the fundraising total here just as soon as we learn the figure.

An improved copy of the podcast mentioned on October 12th, below, is now downloadable.

October 16th - it was a real thrill to play in Salisbury last night - what a wonderful audience.

October 12th - we're hoping for a better copy (this one is a bit distorted), but here's a podcast of hago on Express FM two days ago, where some of the team were interviewed by James Sandy (website doesn't work in certain browsers). We're grateful for permission to link to the file here - copyright is © king of the buttons productions/93.7 Express FM

October 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

  • Bungalow Bill- Odd - we don't have a page with "Bungalow Bill" on it. Well, actually we do NOW!
  • Cello lower than guitar - yes, it stands on the floor
  • Five string guitar - we've all had one of those sometimes when we open the case...
  • Garden in the words - we have a feeling you mean "Garden in the rain" - published 1928, and it did well for the Four Aces in 1951-2
  • Guitar qaurts for begginers - as a beginner, we recommend halves first, then move on to pints. Quarts are for the experienced only...
  • How can i make my guitar higher pitched? - turn those little peg things
  • Lowest highest note - the lowest highest note might be on the Double Bass; we're pretty sure the highest lowest note is on the piccolo
  • Prim guitar - Here in hago we regard the electric as improper, so I guess our primes are prim...
  • Reaction paper about guitar ensemble - this must be the Litmus test. We must be alkali - we don't play any acid house

September 2011

Portsmouth Music Hub

September 14th - hago is pleased to support the Portsmouth Music Hub, a portal for music education here in South East Hampshire.

Their website launches tomorrow - Sep 15th.

Click here for their website.

September 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

August 2011

August 31st - today our video count on YouTube crossed the 50,000 threshold - next stop 1/10 million! To see our videos visit our YouTube channel (opens in new window)

August 28th - the summer is always a quiet period in hago, because we don't schedule any rehearsals.
We've added another concert review to our Reviews Page and we're looking forward to meeting you in Salisbury on October 15th for our first autumn concert.

August 3rd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

July 2011

July 25th - preparations for our next concert are well under way now. It's on October 15th in Salisbury, and if you've not seen us in concert, perhaps our YouTube trailer will tempt you...

July 17th - if you live too far away from us to come to one of our fund-raising concerts, but you like the idea of raising money for charities, then why not sponsor some of the hago team in the fund-raising Race for Life. Just click through and read all about it!

June 2011

June 25th - we were delighted to share a concert with Flautissimo last night - check out our photos of the flute orchestra on our Friends Page.

Concert feedback included...

  • ...very good it was too! The ease of which hago play belies all the hard work that goes into it! Well done
  • ...a brilliant evening! Thanks peeps
hago website - June 4th 2000

hago website - June 2000

June 4th - our website is 11 years old today.

We first appeared on the web in June 2000, with a tiny website containing just 8 pages.

Today, our website contains 496 pages, with a further 487 pages for members only.

On our website today you'll find

In our first eleven years we've served over 5 million pages and 44,000 videos!

June 2nd - Our YouTube channel served up more hago videos last month than ever before. 44,000 views and rising!

June 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

We also had, so our web statistics tell us, someone who arrived here looking for Browns Hair Lounge Southampton. As our webmaster doesn't have much hair, that really didn't go down too well...

May 2011

The Race for Life is an event raising funds for Cancer Resarch, and some of our players are Racing and Raising Funds. Do visit their fund-raising page.

Derek Hasted, our Musical Director has launched a new website at classical-guitar-lessons.co.uk to promote his expanding tuition business.

If you want to learn to play Classical Guitar, or you can play but want to improve, do visit it!

We've put together a short video advertising our next Portsmouth concert - see it on our Concert Page

May 22nd - our concert last night raised £446.64, split equally between "The Friends of St Peter's" and "The Titchfield Bonfire Boys"

The organiser writes

Thank you all so much for a brilliant evening. I heard so many comments from people saying how much they appreciated your music and
enjoyed your humour
Thank you again for your professionalism and supporting us.

May 8th - we've just sent out a newsletter again, but some email addresses have bounced. If you subscribed to the hago newsletter but have recently changed your email address, please click on this link and resubscribe - thanks!

May 2nd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

April 2011

April 24th - our videos on YouTube have now been watched 40,000 times. Happy Easter from everyone in hago!

April 2nd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

March 2011

March 20th - One of the guests at our Petersfield Concert earlier this month was Ernie Swinburn, a professional photographer. We've put a very much shrunk-down version of one of his photos of the concert in our 2011 gallery, plus a link to his website, which is full of photos - enjoy the "Prints for Sale" gallery, with some really wonderful images - you might even want to buy one to hang at home!

March 11th - The Portsmouth Music Festival is running at the moment. The hago cup, which we presented to the Festival in 2004 for "the best performance on two or more guitars" has been won this year by Graham Cleaver and Gilly Slot - well done!

March 8th - we have a final total now for the concert on March 5th - £612.94, going to The Rosemary Foundation. Thank you for helping us increase our total fund-raising to £52,800!

We played at an amazingly well filled Petersfield Festival Hall last night in aid of The Rosemary Foundation. We'll post the fund-raising total as soon as we have it.

From the Hayling Island Forum

"They played a variety of music perfectly, beautifully, passionately and with such entertaining narration. I would have paid triple for a ticket."

March 3rd - we celebrated two special events at last night's rehearsal
The first was our 12th birthday (and yes, there was cake!)
And the second was a long service award to Philip for 200 attendances

See the photos in our gallery...

March 2nd - Here's the trail for our concert this Saturday, March 5th - our most popular YouTube video this month by a large margin!

Visit our concerts page for ticket details...

March 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

February 2011

February 25th - today we're 12 years old!

Click and watch!
Here's a taster of where we are, 12 years on... Danza Cubana, recorded 3 weeks ago, which we're playing on March 5th as well as at our Titchfield Concert on May 21st advertised on the video

February 23rd - we're featured in today's Petersfield Post

February 20th - our YouTube channel has been the busiest ever this month - check out our advert for our March 5th concert

February 13th - We've sent out another newsletter, advertising our March 5th concert. A couple of email addresses are bouncing, so if you've changed your email address, do resubscribe with your new address.

February 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

January 2011

January 26th - We now have a presence on easthampshire.org - if you've not met this site and you live in East Hampshire, we commend it to you - here's their homepage...

January 20th - one of our performances of Liberty Bell has featured on PodShow - on "Running The Narrow Path"...

"I'm a back of the pack podcaster and runner in my fifties, running the roads and paths in my neighbourhood here in Sweden, struggling with my training and the English language"

Happy New Year, from all of us in hago - the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra!

We're looking forward to 2011 - we have some exciting concerts coming up, raising money for a variety of local charities, and we're looking forward to taking our wide-ranging repertoire to some new areas across of the South of the UK.

If you're looking to make some New Year's Resolutions that you'll actually be able to keep, we have some ideas for you....

January 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

  • A3M service stations - we're not really sure the page Google took you to was quite what you'd hoped for!
  • My guitar strings are different lengths - yes, that's because some notes are longer than others
  • Portsmouth cathedral toilet - you won't be "flushed with success" at the page Google recommends...
  • Rude words for in an english country garden - sorry to disappoint - we're a family friendly website
  • Words that go with country - how about "and western"? Not that we do that either!


2010 - a summary...

  • An exciting concert with our new friends Flautissimo, at the Turner Sims, Southampton
  • Some sad goodbyes to long-standing players, but some great new players join us
  • Concerts for The Portsmouth Festivities and the Waterlooville Music Festival
  • Our first "Silver Long-Service awards" - yes, some of our team have clocked up 200 rehearsals now!
  • We made some changes to our on-line presence
    • A new front page on our website with a slideshow embedded in it
    • Another 4 videos on YouTube, and the number of viewings per month doubled from Jan 2010 to Dec 2010
    • More photos on our Facebook channel

2010 - related pages

December 2010

Happy Christmas from all of us in hago!

Our Christmas message of goodwill to all is accompanied by hago playing John Rutter's Candlelight Carol, here recorded in 2002, but we played it just last week at our annual Carol Evening at local Sheltered Accommodation.

December 1st - as promised, we're letting you know the total raised in our recent concert (see November 21st below) - we're delighted to tell you that the Hospice has received over £784. If you came to the event, thank you for helping to make the event so successful!

December 1st - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

November 2010

November 26th - our concert in Hythe has been reviewed in their local paper...

Cornerstone once again hosted the very popular Hampshire Guitar Orchestra, and again they thrilled their packed audience by playing some unbelievable music...

...The combined sound (of the alto prime bass and contra guitars) is almost unique and the audience was surprised at how delicate and yet powerful the music could be, as was the case with "The Devil's Galop" and "La Partida"

Such was the success of this second visit by Hampshire Guitar Orchestra that they will be returning to Cornerstone for a third time in early 2012

November 21st - comments from last Thursday's concert included

" most entertaining"
" thoroughly enjoyable"
" an excellent evening"

What a fantastic audience we had! We'll post the fund-raising total here as soon as we have it.

YouTube viewing figures are rising

YouTube viewing figures

November 7th - our YouTube channel is really busy lately, and the number of videos being watched is growing month by month

But a real concert is much better. Not only do you find out what goes on between items, but you'll be helping to raise money for charity too!

Our next concert is on November 18th in Swanmore

November 3rd - another month, another set of visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

November 1st - visits to our YouTube channel last month were the highest ever and 24% up on the month before.

October 2010

October 24th

Our YouTube channel has never been busier - if you want to see us in action - visit our YouTube page here

October 23rd - it was a great thrill and a privilege to be invited back to the Royal Star and Garter home in Richmond to play a morning concert. It was also rather an early start! There are photos at the bottom of our 2010 gallery page.

October 20th - if you've heard us in concert and like us, please nominate us in Section O (Best Classical Music Act) in our local Guide Awards - just select your own nomination and type in Hampshire Guitar Orchestra

October 11th - we really enjoyed returning to Hythe URC for a second concert - the event raised a little over £620 for their Building Fund, and brings our fund-raising total to £50,811. The organiser writes...
...it was a wonderful evening and thank you for such an wide range of music and styles and we had so many people that were not from the church. Apart from repaying the loan the whole idea of these concerts is to open the building to the community and that was very much in evidence on Saturday.

October 2nd - Looking back over the last month we can again see some visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

October 1st - viewings on our YouTube channel have now crossed 25,000

September 2010

September 26th - We've had a Hints and Tips page here for a couple of years, and it's been well received. But times move on, and to separate out "advertising concerts and vacancies" from "teaching guitar techniques", we've moved the Hints and Tips to this section of our MD's website....

BMG Magazine

September 21st - we're nearly Page 3 stunners.
Well, we got onto Page 2...

We're featured in the latest issue of BMG (Banjo Mandolin and Guitar), which is the oldest fretted instrument magazine in the world, having first appeared in 1903.

The article is based on an interview by Phil Jones, and features brief information about our history, our fund-raising and the instruments that we play.

It's hard not to get confused - BMG Magazine is different from the BMG Newsletter, which is the publication on the Banjo Mandolin and Guitar Federation, who also featured us in an article recently.

We can't help noticing that guitar seems to be at the end of the list of instruments - that's not where we'd place it!

September 7th - we're delighted that our "just for fun" video this summer is now first in the featured videos on the Exbury Gardens website - see this page... Serendipitously, the piece of music accompanying the video below it (Handel's Saraband) is a piece our Musical Director's other ensemble play!

September 5th - the summer break draws to a close (ironically just as the weather was showing signs of becoming more settled) and here in hago we're thinking about the forthcoming concert season. We have a couple of prospective concerts in planning too, just as soon as we can get replies from the promoters, so keep checking back.

If you've been to more than one hago concert, you'll know that we're constantly making small changes to our programme, and our forthcoming season will be no different, with a new arrangement of a piece we last played many years ago, and a brand new piece that really seems to sit well on guitar.

August 2010

August 4th - just a bit of fun - some video, some hago music and a new YouTube video is born...

July 2010

July 9th - Our charity fund-raising total crashes through the £50,000 mark - as of today it's £50,161

July 1st - Every month in the last 12 months, our YouTube videos have attracted more viewers than the month before, and views are now running at more than three times the number a year ago.

June 2010

June 30th - Our Musical Director's arrangements are being played in quite a few places recently - there are 3 videos on YouTube of some spirited performances...
One composition - Tutu Tango - played in Hungary by the wonderfully named Ensemble of Göd, and two arrangements played at The European Guitar Teachers' Association Ensemble event - Hornpipe and Mermaid

June 27th - Our concert last night at St George's Portsea nearly didn't happen! A fire at an electricity substation the previous night blacked out 47,000 homes, but fortunately power was restored to virtually all properties (except the Gunwharf Quays Shopping Complex and Car Park). A great time was had by all, and you can see some photos in our Gallery...

June 24th - today, our YouTube channel reported that our videos have now been watched 20,000 times. Paysage Ibérique is the most popular right now.

June 20th - we've added a new photo at the foot of our 2010 Gallery

June 18th - what a great audience at last night's concert at Waterlooville Music Festival - it was a pleasure to share a concert with Phil Jones and Douce Ambiance. We've had the following comments!

Absolutely magnificent
Enjoyed every minute
Fantastic - never heard anything like it

June 1st - Any discerning motorist would carry a spare tyre in case of emergencies, and we now have a spare alto - there's a photo at the foot of our gallery....

Looking back over the last month we can again see some visitors who came to our site from Google who clearly shouldn't have bothered! People searching for...

May 2010

May 28th - It's not the end of the month yet, but already the number of views of our videos on YouTube in May has beaten April's figure, and Eternal Flame has become the hago video that's most popular at the moment - and it does fit guitar really well.

May 27th - Our May 22nd concert raised £529 for Friends of Sheet School - a wonderful total - thank you all for coming.
It brings our fund-raising total to £49546 - our next concert is on June 17th at Waterlooville Music Festival.

May 20th - Our new bass guitar had a mouse in it! What? Yes - check out the photo at the foot of our gallery page.

We're really looking forward to our next concert in 2 days time at Bedales, near Petersfield. Come if you can - details here...

May 16th - We've just purchased a second-hand b-bass guitar to make our orchestration even more "not-mainstream". You can see a photo in our gallery (scroll right down) where it's cuddling up to our MD's alto - there's a link to a page all about the Tornavoz we've just fitted to improve the sound.

We're delighted to tell you that we've uploaded another video to YouTube - pictures of the wonderful Exbury Gardens here in Hampshire, taken just yesterday and set to a live recording of hago playing "Song from a Secret Garden"

May 7th - We rehearsed as usual last night in the Small Hall at Lovedean, but the Large Hall was a Polling Station and we had a lot of kids' noses pressed against the window! Who knows - if we inspired them, then in a few years time we might be auditioning them!

May 4th - We've just heard that our April 17th concert raised £400 for the Emsworth Baptist Church Building Fund. It brings our fund-raising total to £49,017 - thank you all!

Guitarists fancying a weekend of ensemble music-making might like to enrol in the BMG Summer School; details here - since removed - out of date

May 3rd - Under three weeks now till our next concert, in the fabulous Olivier Theatre at Bedales, near Petersfield.
We're adding yet more music to our repertoire, some of which we expect to premier at our biennial concert with Cambridge Guitar Orchestra, a concert which has traditionally seen lots of local guitarists attending - a unique chance to hear a massive range of styles.

May 1st - There was a significant rise in the number of views of our Eternal Flame video after our April 17th concert (we'll post the fund-raising total as soon as we have it). At our April concert we changed our orchestration and it's really come alive now - you can hear the new version in our future concerts!

April 2010

April 25th - The Portsmouth Festivities 2010 is now launched, and we're delighted to be part of it again, with our concert featuring Cambridge Guitar Orchestra on Saturday June 26.

April 18th - Our concert last night at Emsworth took place on the first really lovely warm evening of the year. There's a photo of our soundcheck in our 2010 gallery.
We'll post the fundraising total here as soon as we have it.
The organiser writes "Many people have spoken of the very considerable enjoyment that the Concert gave them"

April 16th - Our rehearsal last night was special in so many ways - the new team playing together for the first time and a cracking new piece that we'll be performing later this season, but the icing on the cake (oh yes, we had cakes too - very important to mention that!) was the presentation of our first Silver Long Service Awards. These are presented to those who've attended 200 rehearsals. There's a photo here.

April 1st - April Fool's Day has passed without our Musical Director inflicting yet another one on the unsuspecting folk who inhabit the cloistered world of classical guitar. But like Arnie Schwarzenegger or a cold sore, he'll be back when least expected.
But people are still finding our website with Google searches that defy description. Last month's searches included "Big hugs" and "Why does my E string sound flat?" (because it is!)

March 2010

March 28th - The number of views of our videos on YouTube continues to rise for the eleventh month in succession.

Today is the first day of British Summer Time, which means that officially the British Summer (such as it is!) is on its way. And that means that we move from the season when Churches are cold to the season when they are rather pleasant to sit in. And our first concert of the summer season is on April 17th in Emsworth. Emsworth is famous for its Solar Boat, which features in our recent video.

March 25th - We've placed another new photo at the bottom of our 2010 gallery.

March 21st - Last night's concert with Flautissimo was one of the most fun concerts we can remember. With five sizes of flute (piccolo, concert flute, alto, bass and contra), they provided a sweet and powerful sound that was a delightful contrast to our own, plucked sounds. The acoustic at the Turner Sims, Southampton, was nothing less than fantastic. Flautissimo's programme, which included some medieval dances at one end of the stylistic scale, and Holst's The Planets at the other, was a delight. You can read more about Flautissimo at their website.

March 19th - We've added more photos to our 2010 gallery.

March 13th - many of us in hago thoroughly enjoyed the first episode of the BBC 2 programme "A Band for Britain" (available for 2 more weeks on iPlayer).
If you're a classical guitarist and wished that guitarists had same opportunity for exhilarating music, camaraderie and concerts that these brass players are having, well, we've got seats in hago that you might be able to fill. We're moving onwards and upwards again and this is a great time to get on board! Read more about joining hago here and then don't wait a minute longer - get in touch!

March 9th - we are terribly disappointed to announce that the promoter has cancelled our concert on March 13th. So sorry if you were planning to attend.

March 5th - our rehearsal last night was our largest ever, and was just after our eleventh birthday. Which can mean only one thing. Cake! We've added some photos to our 2010 gallery.

March 3rd - we are delighted that our most recent video - Handel's Water Music, set to a montage of photos from a trip on the Emsworth boat "The Solar Heritage" - is now part of the official publicity for the boat, as you'll see on this page...
Now the fine weather is on its way again, you might like to add a trip to your list of things to do this year - you'll love it!

February 2010

February 28th - some classical guitarists seem incredibly aloof, and yesterday's Guitar Section at Portsmouth Music Festival again threw up a handful of very insular characters. Not so Graham Cleaver & Gilly Slot who beamed smiles and shook hands with the hago players who'd come to support the day. And we're delighted, therefore, that they won the hago cup, for the best ensemble performance - deservedly so! The Adjudicator was Richard Durrant, and he also broke the mould - he was inspirational, and there can't have been a competitor who didn't go away determined to raise their game still higher. A special mention goes to the many kids who produced such confident and musical pieces - tomorrow's guitarists in action!

In a triumph of spell-checker technology over poor spelling, we see that someone found our Fields of Gold YouTube video by searching for "Portsmouth Old Pikchers"

February 19th - we were delighted to welcome two more talented guitarists along to last night's rehearsal. We're hoping they'll join us permanently. We certainly had a lot of music and laughter (and food - what is it about playing guitar than means one just HAS to have something to eat in the middle of rehearsal?). It was a perfect occasion to take some snaps and start off 2010's photo album.

February 15th - our good friends at Cambridge Guitar Orchestra (we're sharing a concert with them in June) are holding a Guitar Weekend in October, so if you live round those parts or you fancy a weekend away, check out their website. Note that there is little accommodation left - book soon!
Closer to home, our Musical Director's informal ensemble, the Guitar Workshop at Farlington had the largest attendance for many years with 32 players and two guitarists coming for a free trial. If you play at novice or intermediate level and want to enjoy a working play-list of 150 ensembles, come along to Derek's Guitar Workshop fortnightly on Thursday evenings.

February 8th - If you haven't heard of the Emsworth Solar Boat - a battery-powered catamaran that is recharged by solar panels - then let us take you on a short video tour of Chichester Harbour, accompanied by hago playing the hornpipe from Handel's Water Music. The video is also now listed on our Audio and Video page.

February 4th - We've made a couple of changes to our website. One or two links will now take you across to our Musical Director's website where those pages now reside.

January 2010

24th January - Well, those of you in the UK will know what a white start it was to the New Year, and our first rehearsal became our first that was cancelled due to the weather. But we met last week, and already we have a new arrangement that looks like it's not only going to be rather special, but will be familiar to everyone too!

We hope you find our new menus make it a little easier to explore our site...

1st January - In the year just gone, we served over 600,000 pages to visitors like yourselves - welcome to our website!

Happy New Year, from all of us in hago - the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra!

A year ago we were talking about the world financial crisis, and saying that it didn't seem to be impacting on the amount of money we'd been able to raise for charity.

One year on, the UK is still in recession (despite our Prime Minister saying that we were best placed to be first out of the gloom). We certainly win a prize for leaving the recession, but unfortunately it's the booby prize.

But... our the amount we raised for charity went up by 25%. Isn't that remarkable? And isn't it wonderful!

With fewer concerts in 2010 (we really did stoke rather a lot into last year!) we know we can't continue this fantastic trend, but we definitely aim to play a series of concerts that appeal to all musical tastes. And we hope to see you at one of them :-)

Happy New Year everyone!


2009 - a summary...

  • Another wonderful concert at the Portsmouth Guildhall, guests of MGC and the Royal British Legion
  • Our concert at Portchester raised £1250
  • Our fund raising is up yet again, to a remarkable £5644.48 - more than 25% up on last year, despite the recession

2009 - related pages

December 2009


23rd December - We wish all our visitors to hago.org.uk the Merriest of Christmases and the Happiest of New Years.

Here's a blast from the past for you - a short Christmas soundclip played by hago back in 2002.

We're playing a verse of John Rutter's Candlelight Carol, arranged for our four sizes of guitar.

We've uploaded another video to YouTube - if you have 3 minutes, come and look! It's not Christmassy unless you live in the Southern Hemisphere, but for us "northerners" it's a reminder that the shortest day is over and summer is slowly on its way back.

21st December - We've just had notification of the final amount of money that our concerts have raised for local charities this year...
We don't raise the money ourselves, it's raised by the people who book us for concerts, but we keep a running total.
This year, the amount we've raised is £5,644.48, which is over 25% up on last year. Who said there was a recession?

The total amount now raised is £48,612 - thank you all!

19th December - our now traditional Carols & Curry last night saw us playing to a wonderful crowd at one of Portsmouth's Warden-assisted complex of flats. Goodness there was some rousing singing, and the sherry and mince pies afterwards were the perfect appetiser to our end-of-year meal at a small restaurant just up the road.

10th December - Our recent concert for The Rowans Hospice raised £807.41, and brings our fund-raising total to £47,925

November 2009

29th November - We've added a new Gallery to our Photo Albums, to celebrate the happy times we've spent (so far!) working with West Sussex Guitar Club - click to view our WSGC gallery, which features photos and soundclips

22nd November - We've been busy with our photo album page - we started on 16th November and we've got over 100 new photos up now.

If you want to see what we've been up to recently, or you want to see how much greyer we are now than 5 years ago, then our photo albums are definitely worth a visit.

We have photos from 2009 back to 1999 including special features on hago and...

16th November - We've been adding more photos to our image galleries here on hago.org.uk

Why not visit our most recent addition - hago at the Birdman of Bognor...

Something rather eccentric that we were involved in from 2005 until it ceased in 2007. We're proud to have been part of it on three occasions.

October 2009

26th October - News just in - our concert in Petersfield last month raised £760 for the "Away From It All" holiday scheme, promised by the Mothers' Union. This provides a break for those who are really struggling, perhaps as single parents, and gives them a chance to gain self-confidence as well as recharge their batteries.

Our fund-raising total is now £47,110

24th October - We've just sent out our 43rd e-newsletter - you can subscribe here - it's all free, and we send out about 6-8 newsletters a year, with details of forthcoming concerts and miscellaneous musings.

22nd October - Now you can become a Facebook Fan of hago using your mobile... Text "fan HampshireGuitarOrchestra" to FBOOK (32665). Standard charges may apply.

18th October - It was a great thrill to play in St Mary's, in the grounds of Portchester Castle, and moreso to enjoy a concert that was a complete sell-out.

The concert was in aid of the Church's roof appeal, and we are delighted to be able to tell you that we raised £1250 towards the appeal. Our fund-raising total has reached £46,350.

Concert comments include

  • "That was quite EXCELLENT" (their capitals!)
  • "That was hugely enjoyable"

October 4th - today saw us playing in the massive Portsmouth Guildhall as part of a concert with Milton Glee Club and the Central Band of the Royal British Legion. It was nothing less than magical - the band and 100-strong choir produced a wonderfully varied and moving programme, and people were queueing up to tell us how the sweet and delicate sound of our guitars made a delightful contrast. We may have some new fans there :-) We're hoping they'll come to our full-length concert at Portchester Castle on October 17th at 7pm.

September 2009

24th September - Our shop is now restocked ready for the start of the Autumn Term (that's Fall Semester to some of you!) - our Christmas ensembles (6 trios and 6 quartets - 12 hidden gems in the Christmas repertoire) always sell well at this time - order now!

September 20th - It was great to see so many people in the audience at last night's concert at Petersfield in aid of the Mothers' Union projects, including the "Away From It All" holiday scheme for those families that simply can't "get away from it all". We'll post the fund-raising total here as soon as we have it. Our next concerts are listed on our concerts page - we're playing all over the South East of Hampshire.

August 2009

25th August - last week saw the annual International Guitar Festival at West Dean, north of Chichester. As well as some fine evening concerts, including the fantastic Los Angeles Guitar Quartet and the charming Montes-Kircher Duo, a highlight for us in hago was the performance of one of our Musical Director's published compositions in the student ensemble concert. Our shop is busy right now, with teachers and students worldwide buying our MD's ensembles for the start of the academic year. We've got stocks of every item and if you order today, we can despatch within 24 hours.

8th August - we will be moving the hago website from one server to another. Nothing will change except that during the move, our website will vanish. Don't panic - we WILL be back, probably within a couple of hours :-)

7th August - from the search information, we see that someone searched for our YouTube Eternal Flame by searching for One Piece Internal Flame. Now that sounds dangerous...

July 2009

10th July - a quick update on our charity fundraising - the total is now £44,662!

7th July - interested in joining hago for our September season? You'll need to contact us urgently - interest is high and places are going fast! Read more here...

Or perhaps one-to-one lessons with our Musical Director is more your need? Derek has vacancies right now, and especially for senior citizens wanting day-time lessons. He's taught people up to 80 years old - age isn't a barrier at all! Read more on his new website about guitar lessons for beginners and improvers.

5th July - well, that was a hot concert last night! The provisional amount raised for charity was £235, and brings our total to £44,248

4th July - we've just held our 200th rehearsal (and our Secretary Viv has been to 197 of them - well done Viv!) and tonight we're off to play our 71st concert!

2nd July - a review of our concert at Quarley Hall is on the Amport Website

What a hot rehearsal tonight - our first heat-wave rehearsal for a very long time - and what a disaster the temperature proved to be - three strings broke on the way to rehearsal!

June 2009

30th June - we've now got a much neater address for our pages on Facebook - www.facebook.com/HampshireGuitarOrchestra - come and take a peek - membership not required, though if you do become a member and a "fan" of hago, you'll get an email update every time we announce a new concert.

27th June - we've added a new gallery of photos to our website commemorating all the fun, food and friendship we've shared with our great friends at Cambridge Guitar Orchestra - see the gallery here.

24th June - our concert in Quarley earlier this month raised the fantastic sum of £645 for the Alzheimer's Society in Salisbury! Thank you to everyone who came; your ticket helped swell that total to such a large and heartwarming sum.

21st June - the longest day. And last night was the shortest night for a VERY long time - we played a wonderful concert in Cambridge, as guests of Cambridge Guitar Orchestra. As has become the tradition, we retreated to our hotel afterwards for the "after-show party", and the last men standing had a very short night before our hearty cooked breakfasts at 8:30 the following morning (well, the same morning, to be honest!)

We continued our tradition of a prank somewhere in the evening, and this year's prank was to mock up an exhibition of portraits of CGO's Musical Director Peter Rueffer, accompanied by our rendition of Left Bank Two, the Vision On Gallery Theme (our YouTube clip of a "straight performance" is here). Our artistic skills are not, it would seem, as highly honed as our guitar skills. You can have a sneak peek at our photos on our Facebook page.

6th June - our fund-raising concert for our great friends at West Sussex Guitar Club, which we played for them on 25th April, is reviewed in their latest newsletter, which you can read online....

4th June - our website is 9 years old today. We're currently serving about 600,000 pages a year to people like yourselves, coming to find out about our concerts, view our videos or buy easy ensemble music.

May 2009

31st May - One of our players writes...

On one of regular pilgrimages yesterday, to what I think is the largest and finest Guitar Shop in the UK, at Birmingham, I was delighted to be given a promotional DVD of something that's being published very soon. Brian Whitehouse, the owner and teacher of some of the finest conservatoire players in the UK, has had exclusive access to the Ramirez Museum, and played one of the world's greatest collections of historical and modern guitars. The whole project, at the invitation of Amalia Ramirez, has resulted in a beautifully illustrated and fascinating book and CD. I was thrilled to have a chance to see one of the final proofs, and it's a stunning book that I'll be rushing to purchase as soon as it's out.

Dozens of pieces of music demonstrate the wonderful sound that these many guitars can make, with pieces being carefully selected to suit the era of the instrument. It's a fascinating and very readable book, lavishly illustrated with photos, manuscripts and other memorabilia.

25th May - our fund-raising total has risen to £43,368 - thank you for supporting our work for charity.

April 2009

27th April - Corda Music, publishers of some of our Musical Director's ensemble music, has a new website - click here to visit. Don't forget you can buy Derek's music online here in our shop.

21st April - we've added highlights from a review in the Hythe Herald about our concert at Cornerstone, Hythe URC - it's at the top of our reviews page.

20th April - tickets are going fast now for our concert on 25th April which is being attended by several important civic dignitaries - we suggest you book in advance at West Sussex Guitar Club - see our concerts page.

Our fund raising total for charity has grown to £43,169!

5th April - our concert on April 2nd in aid of Age Concern brought our concert total to sixty seven. The organiser writes

It was a most enjoyable evening and your performance was as skilful and entertaining as ever

March 2009

28th March - hago has an article in Classical Guitar Magazine.

22nd March - hago's 10th birthday present arrived in the shape of a celebration Masterclass with that most special of ensemble guitarists Mark Eden. Read more here.

16th March - our concert on 14th March at Sherfield English raised £360 for their building funds. Feedback so far includes "What a fabulous night! Great music played by great musicians with great panache."

It brings our charity fundraising to £43092

9th March - we've added a video of Hampshire scenery to our audio/video page.

The Incorporated Society of Musicians Newsletter features our 10th birthday.

6th March - It was a pleasure to welcome two players from Bognor who dropped in to find out what it's like to be part of the hago sound - and what nicer way that to explore three new pieces with a full-team and two guests - what a BIIIIIIG noise!

3rd March - after a quiet post-Christmas intra-recession lull, the hago shop has burst back into life with a cluster of orders for Derek's guitar ensemble music.

We see from the "Insight logs" on YouTube that someone found our video by searching for Hampshire worst hooligon (including the typo). They then watched our video....

2nd March - our charity fundraising total now exceeds £42,700 with the news that our concert at URC Hythe on February 28th raised £840 for their buildings fund - a magnificent total.

hago is the subject of a short article in the Newsletter of the BMG Federation (that's Banjo, Mandolin and Guitar - sorted into increasing order of mellifluous sound, obviously!)

1st March - good to have such a well-supported concert last night - well over 100 tickets sold - we'll post the fundraising total here as soon as we have details.

February 2009

10th Birthday "Telegrams"

YouTube - an award riband YouTube award

Well done, Derek! Splendid present for HAGO's Birthday. Congratulations and every success in the future! Looking forward to your visit in April. Sasha (on behalf of all at West Sussex Guitar Club)

"Great video! Congratulations on HAGO's 10th anniversary! Nice job." - Greg, America

"Happy Birthday HAGO! Lovely video and great music. Hope to see you in concert again soon. " - Kristian, UK

"Re: Hampshire Guitar Orchestra (HAGO) 10th birthday promo. Thanks - I enjoyed that!" - Gilly, UK

"Happy Birthday HAGO!" - Graham, UK

"Congratulations" - Eleftheria, UK

"Very nice. I enjoyed watching and listening. Happy Birthday and Thanks for sharing!!" - Andrea, America

"Wonderful" - Eva, Greece

Happy Birthday! Wonderful video and fabulous playing! All very best wishes for the future - Roland, UK

"Congratulations! Happy Birthday to HAGO! That is a wonderful effort for the charities you support" - Vesuvio, Northern England

February 1999 - 10 years ago - is when it all happened for hago - read more here about our 10th anniversary year - see our promo video too!

January 2009

February's Classical Guitar Magazine has a fantastic review of "Lateral Lines", the CD made by Derek's distant duet partner Bruce Paine. Many of those who came to Bruce and Derek's summer concerts in 2008 are now proud owners of a signed copy.

hago gets mentioned in dispatches too, at the front of the magazine...

AOL/Netscape has a new spam system which is rejecting certain emails before they even reach one's personal email webserver - we only find out 5 days later when we get a bounce message. Today, we learned that some of our hago newsletters from last week have gone astray, and today we're resending them via a different route. Apologies.

Last night was our first rehearsal in 2009 and the 3 new pieces that we've been practising in isolation were pieced together like a jigsaw into something really quite stunning. We'll be playing them in our later concerts this season, and we love them, we really love them!

What a surprise - we served over 600,000 web pages in 2008. That's either a lot of visitors or one very committed stalker. We think it's the former because we've welcomed visitors from 88 countires; we hope to serve a similar number of pages to the 4 corners of the globe in 2009 too. Thank you for calling by!

Happy New Year to everyone from all of us in hago, the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra.
2008 was a pretty dire year worldwide when the financial guano hit the turbine in the banking system, but lack of money does not mean that charities don't still have their outgoings. And what surprised and heartened us, here in hago, was that our charity fundraising for the year was up on 2007 by much more than inflation.
If you look in the press you'll see two camps shouting at each other. On the one hand there's "Broken Britain", and on the other there's "a new morality".
Well, if our recent charity concerts are anything to go by, people are foresaking luxury goods that they buy, only to sit at home in their brick box and ponder their credit card statements. Instead, people are coming out, getting together, enjoying live music and for a few quid making a real difference to local charities.
So whilst we aren't looking forward to Gordon Brown's umpteenth appeal to spend even more money that we haven't got on things that we don't need, we take heart that everywhere we look, people are making sure their money goes on things that matter. And local charities DO matter.
We're confident we'll be fundraising in spades again in 2009, and we know we'll have the pleasure of the company of people like yourselves - people who know that a local charity is more important than owning electronic gizmos that will be out of date before they're out of the box.
See you at one of our concerts!
Happy New Year from everyone in hago


2008 - a summary...

  • hago plays concerts to particularly appreciative audiences at HIADS and Waterlooville Music Festival
  • We add some exciting new pieces to our repertoire and some great jokes to back them up!
  • Our fundraising is up yet again to a new record - a massive £4463.09

2008 - related pages

December 2008

Christmas Greetings and compliments of the season to you all! Musical Director Derek Hasted sends a "Merry Christmas and Happy New Year" to everyone except British Gas, who, in a masterstroke of money-grabbing ineptitude felt it somehow appropriate to email him a Gas Bill at 5:18am on Christmas Morning. If their cash-flow is so desperate as to need his immediate recompense to stave off a miserable Christmas for their employees, then fear not, for our MD has paid electronically same day. We think, however, a small "Bah Humbug" is not out of place for their tactless obsession with getting money out of the pockets of the general public on the one special day of the year.

Last night we played our final concert of the year, for an audience of residents at one of Portsmouth's Sheltered Accommodation buildings. And what a lovely evening it was, hearing them singing along to some well-known carols, and enjoying the very vocal and good-natured heckling that they threw in our direction between items. A great evening, plus another sum of money (details soon) for The Rowans Hospice.

We're about ready for our final concert of the Year. Our MD's other group, the Farlington-based Guitar Workshop, had theirs a couple of days ago (we know, because some of us were there!) and they not only raised over £750 for A.R.C. (Arthritis Research), but had one of the largest raffles ever seen at a guitar concert!

November 2008

Our Wickham concert for The Rowans Hospice raised £1450.09, our largest total ever. What a fantastic gift to a fantastically caring place - and you the audience made it happen. The organiser writes

Once again you produced an absolutely fantastic concert in support of The Rowans Hospice for which we thank you most sincerely. The Church in candlelight with you all on stage was just superb and many remarked how very special this was...

Hon Chairman of the Boarhunt, Southwick and Meon Support Group

At the end of our the concert we bade farewell to Jon, our Leader, into whose boots steps Rich, one of our contra players. Jon is off to spend more time with his day-job, and we wish him every success.

There's another YouTube video we've just discovered featuring some young guitarists playing Tutu Tango by our MD Derek Hasted.

We're in the middle (or is it the start?) of a big recession - will it affect our concert attendances - we think not. Read more...

Not long till our November 20th Concert in aid of The Rowans Hospice - let's try to raise over £1000 again. Book early!

Goodness, our concert on November 1st in Catherington was held on a filthy evening - bitterly cold and with driving rain. But we've had some lovely feedback already... The organiser wrote "Thank you very much for a fabulous concert ... there were many comments about how varied are the styles you play and how lovely the music was", and out of the blue came an email which included "Thought I would let you know that we enjoyed your concert yesterday at Catherington". And we thought all that applause was people banging their hands together to keep warm! We're delighted to hear that they raised £545 for their appeal, a figure that brings our fundraising total to £39615.

October 2008

Just recently, Hotmail has taken an intermittent but fervent dislike to any emails emanating from the hago address. If you contact us and don't get a reply, well panic not, we'll write again via a different address as soon as we get the message from Hotmail that it's confiscated our email - it just puts a bit of a delay in the speed at which we can get back to you.

Our concert on October 18th raised another £350, this time for Farlington Music Festival. We were delighted to be the concert (of the ten in the series) with the largest audience. The concert takes our fundraising total for local charities to over £39000 - check our concerts page to see what future concerts we have. What a thrill to have a standing ovation too - now there's something that doesn't happen all that often at a guitar concert!

One of our many mottoes is that we never cancel. But the organisers of our Marlborough Concert in early 2009 have had to move the venue and the date. Our concerts page has all the latest news.

Better late than never, we've added a new photo to our gallery

Our Concert on 4th October on Hayling was pretty much sold out, and I don't think we've had such a great atmosphere before. It's a wonderful venue that seats 140, and the acoustics are exceptional. It's run by HIADS, the Hayling Island Amateur Dramatic Society, who mix their own productions with guest troupes and musicians to give an excellent programme of events all year. We were very taken with the sheer professionalism of the whole thing!

September 2008

Our concert on September 13th for the Salvation Army raised £208 for the Annual Appeal, and brings our charity total to £38,720. If you came along, thanks for supporting our fundraising. Our next concerts are here.

August 2008

We've dragged our shop kicking and screaming into the 21st century - it's now quick and easy to buy our MD's guitar ensembles - why not try a little of the hago experience with these low-cost and accessible arrangements. Fun to play, audiences love them!

Our MD's pieces in the Associated Board's Music Medals books are being played all over the world - here's a YouTube video of some kids turning in a cracking performance!

What a total surprise it was to find ourselves "mentioned in despatches" in the editorial of this month's Classical Guitar Magazine!

July 2008

The concert at URC Hayling, with MD Derek Hasted and New Zealand guitarist Bruce Paine raised £1,500 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association. Thank you for our support for this very worthy cause.

It was a great privilege to play at All Saints Denmead to a particularly warm and appreciative audience of over 100 people, and moreso to be joined by one of New Zealand's finest players, Bruce Paine, who played "Remembering Prague" by Stepan Rak and joined us for Schindler's List.

June 2008

Last night (21st June) was the opening night of the Portsmouth Festivities. It was a thrill to play at St George's Portsea and to renew our friendships with Cambridge Guitar Orchestra, whose orchestration now includes a 5-string electric bass in certain pieces. What a concert of contrasts! If you came to support us, then thank you so much for coming. We've put a photo of hago playing at the super venue here.

It was great fun to play at the Waterlooville Music Festival, which runs from June 7th to June 15th, and with an audience of 137, it was a really joyful occasion. Indeed we saw our oldest audience member - a lady who was 100 that very week. hago - something for all ages!

May 2008

Our news page has been very quiet, but that doesn't mean that hago has been very quiet! Behind the scenes we've been starting to set up yet more concerts for 2009, and we'll be adding those to our forthcoming guitar concerts page very soon.

April 2008

Tickets for our concert on June 21st with our friends Cambridge Guitar Orchestra are now on sale from Portsmouth Festivities - see our concerts page for contact details

Our concert in Copnor on April 12th raised £363 for their Church rebuilding fund - it's an inspirational project and we are delighted to have been able to help them a little with their mammoth fundraising task. Thank you to everyone who came and supported our evening. Our fundraising total has increased to £36386!

The March Hampshire View magazine, which features a two-page article about us, is now available to download on-line.

March 2008

We had a great opening concert last night at URC Hayling and are delighted to have raised £950 for their Building Fund - thank you all for coming and supporting us. Our fundraising total for local good causes now stands at £36,022. The organiser writes

Our final total is £950, after all expenses... So that is really fantastic and many thanks again for all you have done towards that. You do work so hard to make it all happen... it was fairly obvious that the audience thoroughly enjoyed your superb music, sound, humour and general fun atmosphere. Everyone was talking about it today and the fact that your players clearly love performing with you impressed people especially.

Check us out in "Hampshire View" and "Wiltshire View" Magazines March 2008 - free from Waitrose, M&S and Waterstones!

Congratulations to South Hants Guitar Fantastico, winners of the hago cup at this year's Portsmouth Music Festival - a thrill to hear them play pieces including La Bamba (remember you heard it here first!)

February 2008

Feb 25th - we're 9 years old today and celebrating with the biggest concert season ever!

Are you a budding guitarist? There's another technical topic for you - about high position work - on our Musical Director's website

January 2008

Happy New Year to all our visitors from everyone here in hago!


2007 - a summary...

  • hago plays the Portsmouth Guildhall and 2 sell-out concerts
  • We improve our bass instruments with a Tornavoz and launch a Youth Scheme
  • Our fundraising is 43% up on 2006 - a massive £4157.43

2007 - related pages

December 2007

Our Christmas Newsletter has gone out to almost 100 subscribers - it's free, it's ever 6-8 weeks - subscribe here

Our concert in Southwick in November raised £934.86 for The Rowans Hospice, and brings our Charity Fundraising to £35067

Goodness - we've 11 concerts in planning already for 2008!

Our concert at St Nicholas North End raised over £200 for CCL - Chernobyl Children's Lifeline. It's a great thrill to be able to help such a tragic set of kids by offering a respite from the background radiation in Belarus. Many of the children arrive in the UK for a holiday with only the clothes they stand up in. The money tonight will give them a break, a break that can add as much as two years to their tragically shortened life - thank you for coming tonight!

We're delighted to announce a new scheme to let talented 16-21 year-old guitarists have a real taster of what playing in a Guitar Orchestra is all about. If you fit that age-bracket or you're a teacher with young players, read more here!

November 2007

It was great to see so many people at Southwick - that's two sell-out concerts in one month - it'll be going to our head!
The organiser writes

Thank you to everyone for another absolutely splendid Concert at Southwick last evening - it was really great to have you back in Southwick Church.

Will be in touch as soon as we have an indication of the fundraising, although we shall have to wait for the Gift Aid envelopes to be opened and checked at Hospice headquarters.

My grateful thanks to all your team - you are just a very special Group.

With 130 tickets sold for our Park Place Concert on 1st November, we were optimistic that we would raise a sizeable sum for the work that the Sisters do in India. We've just heard that the Friends of Park Place have handed over a cheque for £1025 - what a great total! It brings our total raised for charity to £33245

October 2007

Another Guitar FAQ - when to re-string.

Our fundraising total climbs to £32220

What a lovely Church it is at Four Marks - excellent acoustics and an audience that really enjoyed our eclectic mix of styles. The organiser of our concert in aid of Friends of Boundaries Surgery writes:

Thank you to you and all the orchestra for the fantastic concert on Saturday night. I have had so much feed back of how super it all was - So thank you all very much for coming and providing such a great time for us all.

We made £430 clear for our funds - I waited until I knew the final amount before I sent this. So again thank you.

We're back in harness now with our regular autumn and spring concerts for local charities - see our concerts page

September 2007

What a great evening we had at the Portsmouth Guildhall, where we were guests of the Milton Glee Club, who put on a superb evening of massively enjoyable music. We needed just a little amplification to stand a chance being heard after a large band and a 100-strong choir, but it was a real thrill to play to a 1000-strong audience and to surprise each and every one of them with the sound that a guitar orchestra makes!

Our concert at Winchester for BRPS is long gone from our website, but BRPS continues to be in the news - the BBC news...

We had a great time at the Birdman of Bognor on September 2nd - mind you, it was blowing a gale!

August 2007

Another free lesson with another mini teach-in - all about tone production (Now on our Musical Director's website)

July 2007

Our fundraising total has reached £31750!

It was really nice to return to St Faith's, where we last played in May 2005, this time raising almost £150 for their organ restoration.

June 2007

What a great time we had in our biennial visit to Cambridge to play with CGO, and what a great audience too. Read more here...

A small change to our home page means that you can now see when "new news" is added to this page

Our concert for Street Pastors in Portsmouth on June 9th raised £500 for their project and brings our charity fundraising total to £30979. Elly Mulvany, the coordinator, writes
"It was very successful and after costs we have raised £500 that will sponsor 2 Street pastors to be out on the streets for 2 years!"

May 2007

There's another 5-minute lesson on our Musical Director's website - this time our topic is Dynamic Range

We enjoyed meeting many new faces and some old (well, not old!) friends at our May 11th concert in Winchester.O ver £170 goes to BRPS and our charity total reaches £30,479

We've added another mini-article of interest to guitarists - about tone production and ensembles - now on our Musical Director's website

April 2007

Dedication should never go unrecognised - our latest Long Service presentation....

Our fundraising for local charities reaches £30,300 following another donation to The Rowans Hospice

March 2007

Our concert in Emsworth on March 16th raises £647.05 for Hope and Homes for Children.

Our fundraising for local charities crosses £30,000 to reach £30,200 - thank you everyone who has helped us reach this super figure

Our concert season is under way - our first is on March 16th - our free email newsletter has all the dates as they approach...

February 2007

February 25th - hago is 8 years old today, and we're celebrating by booking more concerts than ever this year!

January 2007

Our MD travels far and wide auditioning players for hago - Bruce Paine's website features Derek and Bruce in concert at Alberton House, Mt Albert, Auckland, New Zealand

We've now got booking details for our concert in Emsworth on March 16th in aid of Hope and Homes for Children - see also the Portsmouth News 30th January

Our charity fund-raising total climbs to £29546

Happy New Year to all our many visitors! We are already setting up many more fundraising concerts


2006 - a summary...

  • hago plays for Project Mali and the new Waterlooville Music Festival
  • Our fundraising is 46% up on 2005, totalling £2894.72
  • We welcome flautist Louise Harbert and 'cellist Gwen Treharne at rehearsal

2006 - related pages

December 2006

Everyone in hago wishes all our visitors a Merry Christmas

Our fundraising is up 46% on last year, and that's down to you, the audience - thank you!

The money raised for The Rowans Hospice from our concert at St James Without-the-Priory Gate Church, Southwick is £1000.63 - our charity fundraising total is now £28934.

Our concert at St Nicholas North End raises £340 for Crisis at Christmas and brings our charity fundraising total to £27934

Goodness - what a squeeze to fit us all into the Church in Southwick on November 30th for our Rowan's Hospice concert - it was a sell-out! The money raised for The Rowans Hospice is £1000.63 - our charity fundraising total is now £28934.

November 2006

Welcome to all the visitors who read about us in Hampshire Now Magazine - can we tempt you to our December Concert in aid of Crisis at Christmas ?

A Fox-Hunting forum has decided to hot-link one of our photos so we pay to serve it up on their website. Not that it worked - we caught 'em at it - but honestly - that's theft, for fox sake!

A major reorganisation of our website may have left Google pointing you to pages that we've archived away, but we're confident Google will settle back down, and until it does, why not see what we've added - a photo gallery

October 2006

Our charity fundraising total reaches £27586

Welcome to visitors from the Oasis Fanatics Forum - with this level of interest, we may have to do an Oasis cover some time!

Our concert in aid of Age Concern was a great success - good to see so many people enjoying our programme.

Another "Hints and Tips" article for you - this time a few words on playing faster (now moved to our Musical Director's site)

Our charity fund-raising total climbs to £27213

September 2006

Goodness - suddenly we have a new guitar and a new player!

Another out-take!

What a glorious sunny day at the Birdman of Bognor

Read a short interview with our Musical Director Derek Hasted about the Hantsweb Web Awards on the Hantsweb website (opens in new window)

August 2006

How can you make a contrabass sound better with some plastic and sticky tape? It's a bit more scientific than Blue Peter, but just as much fun! See the photos, hear the soundclips

It was good to meet many other guitarists at the West Dean Guitar Festival - happy plucking to all of you!

July 2006

Our charity fund-raising total climbs to £27173

Cambridge Guitar Orchestra teamed up with us for our annual joint Concert.
Talking of which, Graham Anthony Devine was in the audience - Graham is, of course renowned for his superlative technique and his growing catalogue of excellent CDs. He's playing locally - Saturday 29th July at St John's Chapel, St John's Street in Chichester. Tickets on the door are £9 (£7 conc). For more information ring 020 8968 7491.

Hampshire Area Guitar Orchestra becomes the Hampshire Guitar Orchestra - story...

If you came to our Alton concert and are interested in another concert local to that area, then go along to St Andrew's Parish Church Farnham on Saturday July 15th at 7pm, hand over £7 and enjoy an evening with Classical Guitarist Ben Pugsley, in concert with Reichard Veitch and Michael Kruk - tel 01252 727317

Talking of Alton - photos from our concert have arrived here

June 2006

Our charity fund-raising total climbs to £26511

Our concert in Alton raised £928.91 for Project Mali

A busy week on our website - lots of visitors since our concerts at Waterlooville and Alton. Welcome to you all!

The Waterlooville Music Festival is in full flow - we send our best wishes to everyone who is playing - we really enjoyed playing in such a packed Church on 13th June!

We had to chuckle - our old name still won't lie down and die! We're in tonight's The News as "Havant Area Guitar Orchestra", but trust us, it'll be Hampshire Area Guitar Orchestra that plays for you on Tuesday 13th!

hago.org.uk is 6 years old this month and has grown from 8 pages to 546 pages. Do join us as we celebrate our Webbing Anniversary!

May 2006

We all wined and dined in style at our Open Rehearsal yesterday, along with a number of local guitarists.

Amount raised for charity climbs to £25582

May 14th - if you missed yesterday's concert with Amanda Cook and WSGC, there are some soundclips here

hago.org.uk's success in the Hantsweb Web Awards is featured in the Parish Magazine in Bedhampton

The Bristol Spanish Guitar Centre is now selling Rod Capper Guitars.
Why tell you that? Because Bruce Paine played one in our joint concert last July - see photos of Bruce and Rod and a video clip too.

We rightly panned the Spinnaker Tower - our local Millennium project - for the embarrassingly hopeless way it opened 6 years late. But once opened we were impressed and our MD set up a gallery of photos from the Spinnaker Tower so that if you couldn't get there, you could enjoy our local attraction from afar. The Tower received many more visitors than they ever expected, so what did they do? Very quietly put the price up. It's no longer value-for-money, and their bare-faced greed is yet another embarrassment right on hago's doorstep. Enjoy our MD's photos instead - they're free!

April 2006

The first of what we hope will be several articles about ensemble techniques has arrived on our Musical Director's website

March 2006

Another Open Rehearsal - we're delighted to welcome guitarists and guitar teachers from all over the area to another evening of music and fun, completely free of charge!

Our website is mentioned in despatches in The News and in Hampshire Now Magazine

Our March 11th concert brings our total raised for charity to £25577

We're honoured and delighted to win the Hantsweb Award for Best Special Interest Website, presented on March 7th. Story and photos from the Web Awards ceremony here...

Virtually all of our website meets Bobby Priority 2 (Level AA) for accessibility and some pages are level AAA.

Well done to all the local guitarists who triumphed in the Portsmouth Music Festival on March 4th. We send special congratulations to Peter Buekers, Richard Evans and Mike Warin, winners of the hago cup

A warm welcome to the many visitors arriving via the Hantsweb site - we have concerts in Cosham, Chichester, Alton and Portsmouth soon - do come if you can.

February 2006

25th February is hago's 7th birthday.
Birthdays mean cakes (especially in hago!) - our rehearsal on 23rd February most definintely required a suitably large cake-break - photo at the foot of this page...

Our website meets Bobby Priority 1 (Level A) for accessibility. We're working to move to Level AA to make life easier for visitors with visual problems. 193 of our pages are now Level AA or AAA.

www.hago.org.uk is through to the final 3 in the Hantsweb Web Awards Special Interest section. We'd cross our fingers, but it makes playing guitar even more tricky than usual!

Our charity fund-raising total is now £25381

More free music! Try our easy Sailor's Hornpipe for 3 guitars, mandolins or violins

In response to a request, we've produced a table of the pitch ranges of all our guitars

January 2006

Welcome to visitors from Google Groups, where links to our different sizes of guitar have appeared!

We're pleased to have another long-service award ceremony

Our website served 385,215 pages last year

Happy New Year from us all here in hago!


2005 - a summary...

2005 - related pages

December 2005

Merry Christmas from hago - read up about 2005, including how our MD meets his doppelgänger in a Curry House

Our now traditional Carol Concert at one of the local Sheltered Housing Schemes took place on December 15th

Our charity fund-raising total is now £25369

Welcome to the dozens of visitors from the Dave Gorman website forum, and more curiously, from the Kylie Minogue forum. If you're too far away to come to one of our concerts, let us at least show you around - see our Hampshire photos (opens in new window) and watch us in video

November 2005

Two years after winning the Guitar Orchestra Competition of Great Britain, we're delighted to hand over the crown to this year's winners...
Orquesta de Guitarras de la Escuela Municipal de Música y Danza de Donostia San Sebastian Gipuzkoa Spain
(Should look nice, engraved on the trophy...)   Well done everyone!

Our charity fund-raising total is now £24208 - come to our Xmas Concert on December 10th and help us reach £25000!

Hear Bruce Paine and hago playing part of Schindler's List from our July concert

Our set at Petersfield on November 12th in aid of Cecily's fund was a great success - the evening raised over £1000

All change at hago - we've bought more alto guitars (photo & story), and as a result, we have a Raimundo 1498 requinto & hard case for sale

Alan Carter-Davies from Nottingham contacted us about using one of our photos on the website he's building. If you enjoy poetry, visit www.poemsbyriver.co.uk

The month just gone was a busy one here at hago.org.uk - we served 48,892 pages - just 20% less than our local Borough Council!

October 2005

Our Spinnaker Tower pages attracted lots of visitors reading of the endless problems with the tower. Now the tower is open, it's time to present the other side of the coin in a set of glorious pictures from the Spinnaker Tower on our MD's website

Had a spam from a daft name at hago.org.uk?
Not us - honest - someone's using our email address as a fake reply-to again.
We don't sell fake pills. If you feel you need more inches down below to achieve that extra depth, we simply suggest a Niibori Bass guitar...

If you first came to our site following a link from Old New Thing about the Millennium Tower, you should know that there is good news - The Spinnaker Tower, which failed to open in 2000, is opening, by coincidence, just over 2000 days late...

A new home for us - our rehearsal venue is being redecorated (painfully slowly), we were assured it would re-open on September 16th. Sorry, October 1st. Sorry, October 14th. Sorry, October 21st. Sorry, November 7th. So we've moved to Lovedean - there's a photo of our October 6th rehearsal in the gallery

September 2005

New to classical guitar? Ten photos showing you how to tie really neat knots when you restring your guitar - now moved to our MD's website

A triple celebration at our first rehearsal of autumn - 2 new players and a new playee!

Our July concert is reviewed in Classical Guitar Magazine

We're about to hand over our crown, awarded with our victory at the 6th Guitar Orchestra Competition of Great Britain, as IGF begin organisation of the 7th...

August 2005

We regret that the Open Rehearsal we had planned for October 6th has been postponed because our rehearsal Hall is being refurbished and the contractors have failed to keep to their schedule, having slipped twice in two months...

Our page featuring the Bruce Paine & hago concert contains two reviews

July 2005

See & hear Bruce Paine & hago on video in our moving concert finale on the day of the London bombings

Visitors from outside our area - come and view the latest picture in our Hampshire Gallery (opens in new window)

Total raised for charity now £23812

The News features a large write-up and a photo of our July 1st Concert

Our July 7th Concert with Bruce Paine attracts a massive audience - one of the largest guitar concerts in the area. Photos and write-up.

Our July 1st Concert raises £580 for St James.

June 2005

Total raised for charity now £22532

Great fun at The Rowans - the audience start a singalong!

Thank you to our friends Cambridge Guitar Orchestra for a really enjoyable concert on June 11th!

May 2005

Phil Shaddock predicted disaster today if ... you guessed - the Spinnaker Tower again!

Total raised for charity now £22451

April 2005

Welcome to the many visitors from the Old New Thing Blog - good to see you!

A new front page to help you leap feet first into our massive site

A small Press Kit for those people promoting our concerts.

We're pleased to announce that our 2005 Open Rehearsal is on October 6th. If you can sightread at Grade 3 standard, make a note of the date now - enjoy a fun evening out and try our unusual guitars too! More details soon.

March 2005

hago wish all our visitors a Happy Easter!

We've just sent out our latest newsletter - it's free and you can subscribe here
Two copies bounced - if you change your email address, you'll need to tell us here

We're serving more & more pages (last month we served 23,500 pages) so we reckon a spring-clean was due!

We're pleased to celebrate Easter and the first signs of spring and summer with a fresh new look to hago.org.uk

Here's what we've done :

  • We've made the website a little easier on the eye with softer colours and more white space
  • The website still works on an 800x600 monitor, but we're starting to make better use of larger monitors
  • We've made each page about 5% faster to load
  • We've used a few more of the features common to the more modern browsers
  • We've kept the layout compatible with older browsers like Netscape 4, and with text-based screen-readers
  • There's still no Javascript or cookies, so you can browse with your security settings as high as you like

The wanderer returns - we welcome back Avril, hago's first ever contra player

In response to a question asking for help, another string formula in our FAQs

Our ticket reservation system is upgraded to accept credit card payments for the Bruce Paine concert - AND you save money if you purchase on-line!

February 2005

The hago cup is awarded at the Portsmouth Music Festival again

Our 6th Birthday - cake, wine, lemonade, cake, tea & coffee. And cake.

More technical blurb for stringophiles (if such a word exists!)

Details of our very special Concert with New Zealander Bruce Paine and news of other forthcoming concerts

A heart-warming epilogue to our Hale Court Christmas Concert - £100 raised for Lloyd Scott's Charity Appeal

January 2005

Our very first long service awards! Photos and report

A rather belated 2-page feature & massive photo in Classical Guitar Magazine!

In response to an overseas request - photos of Hampshire - plus the connection between Privett & New Zealand
(Now moved to our Musical Director's Website - the above links still work)

A new Guitar Family FAQ 

A new home page photo


2004 - a summary...

  • hago plays at the International Guitar Festival at Bath and with Amanda Cook and West Sussex Guitar Club
  • Our outreach gathers speed with music at Hale Court and QA Hospital
  • We hold our first Open Rehearsal, welcoming local players for an evening of music-making and fun

2004 - related pages

December 2004

More about our free newsletter

£22042 now raised for local charities

hago play Music for Christmas at the local Hospital and at Hale Court Sheltered Accommodation

November 2004

Our Director contributes 7 original compositions to the Associated Board's Music Medals scheme - now on sale

We're aware someone is sending spam with a forged return address, making it look like hago sent it. Whilst we care very much that you enjoy our concerts, have our assurance that our concern doesn't extend to your bedtime stamina, hair loss, mortgage applications or your desire to help a terminally ill widow of a despot unlock £32,000,000 from a secret bank account. Our privacy statement will reassure you of that!

October 2004

We're delighted to welcome yet another new player

September 2004

It's all new!
Our first rehearsal with our new name
We tackle five - yes 5 - new pieces
We welcome another new member
A new charity fund-raising total : £21246
And we add our first new addition to our "out-takes" for a while!

Our Musical Director's informal ensemble has a new website at www.guitar-workshop.org.uk

hago's new name featured in the local press

Our burgeoning commitments encourage us to take on a new name - the Hampshire Area Guitar Orchestra - and the new website appearance you see here. More information here ...

More additions to our links pages - easier ways to link to us

July 2004

hago play at the International Guitar Festival Bath

June 2004

hago.org.uk wins a Golden Web Award

We held our first Open Rehearsal, welcoming guitarists from Grade 3 to Diploma level

May 2004

More pages on obscure sizes of guitar, and obscure pages on even more sizes of guitar

Information about suppliers added to guitars section and strings page moved

April 2004

hago.org.uk wins a Web Excellence award from Ducks Deluxe

March 2004

More information if you're wondering whether you would like to play in hago

hago play at St Thomas in aid of the Parish appeal - new review added

February 2004

The hago cup is awarded for the first time at the Portsmouth Music Festival

hago at the PMF Opening Concert - reviewed by The News

January 2004

Our January Concert was a great success, and featured Amanda Cook and West Sussex Guitar Club


2003 - a summary...

2003 - related pages

December 2003

hago plays a Rehearsital that raises £260 for our local Hospice

November 2003

hago wins the 6th Guitar Orchestra Competition of Great Britain! Read the story here

Article on hago in The Portsmouth News on November 4th 2003

Even earlier...

Our latest two new players feature in our updated homepage photo

Download a quintessentially English trio - free, for you.

hago's ten chickens

Strange happenings in the Havant Area (now on our MD's website - link still works)

More on contrabass guitars

More music to buy

The world's smallest shopping centre? (now on our MD's website)


2002 - a summary...

2002 - related pages


2001 - a summary...

  • hago wins the Guitar Ensemble section at 2 Festivals, Portsmouth and Chichester
  • We celebrate the arrival of our first contra guitar - our 4 sizes of guitar are here!

2001 - related pages


2000 - a summary...

  • hago's website is launched - our outreach begins
  • Our repertoire grows to 32 concert items and 6 Christmas pieces
  • We add percussion to some items; in April our requinto becomes an alto guitar!

2000 - related pages


1999 - a summary...

  • hago meets with 12 founder members - the journey begins on 25th February
  • In September we acquire our first 2 Niibori guitars - a requinto and a bass
  • Our first two concerts raise £1601 for good causes locally

1999 - related pages


Cobweb Corner


hago.org.uk is a living website and as time moves on we retire out-of-date ones.

Read more here