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
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!
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
Not long till our November 20th Concert in aid of The Rowans Hospice - let's try to raise over £1000 again.
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.
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!
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.
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!
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.
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
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
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.
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!)
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
Happy New Year to all our visitors from everyone here in hago!