Saturday, October 25, 2008

Atwaters Keyboard Club

Wow, what a great mini-concert this morning at Atwaters Musicworks at their Hobson Street premises! Murray Hancox, the Manager of the Keyboards Department, arranged for a music student to play for us and play she did! Jessica Kim had the audience spellbound for her concert on the Yamaha grand piano. Jessica played three classical pieces by: Beethoven; Chopin; and Rakmaninoff. Jessica started to learn piano at about 7 years of age but didn't start to learn to play 'seriously' until about 5 years ago at the age of 13. When asked how she learns to play by memory, Jessica said that she learns the pieces in sections and then recalls the sheet music in her head visually as she plays - photographic memory! Jessica has been accepted for the Auckland University School of Music 2009 intake. Later, Jessica is hoping to study at the Royal College of Music, London. Good luck with your music studies Jessica.

After the mini-concert, Murray arranged a keyboard clinic for the audience to ask hands-on questions about getting the best out of their Clavinova's or PSR keyboards. both Murray and other knowledgeable members of the audience offered assistance - very useful.

Murray Hancox introducing Jessica Kim to the audience.

STOP PRESS! Exciting news. Murray announced to the audience that the next Saturday morning concert will not be on the last Saturday of the month of November as per usual, but instead an extra special Christmas concert will be arranged for Saturday 6th December 2008 at 10.00 am. We are promised the 'Full Monty' with nibbles, streamers and party hats! And now for the BIG NEWS... the guest artist will be a return visit to the Atwaters Keyboard Club by Deryn Trainer who you will recall won the grand final "Stars in their Eyes" contest earlier this year. The writer was privileged to be in the audience on 27th September 2008 on Deryn's last performance for Atwaters Keyboard Club and what a fantastic mini-concert that was. Deryn even answered our questions about his music background and playing techniques - wonderful and so informative. Best that you book this into your diaries now so you don't miss this very special event. Shortly after the December concert, Deryn is heading-off to Los Vegas for the prize he received for winning "Stars in their Eyes" earlier this year. I have added this event into the 'Other Events' section of our Web Page as an additional reminder (scroll-down to the bottom right of this window for details).

Deryn stunning us at Atwaters Keyboard Club on 27th September 2008
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Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Orewa Music Korg Workshop

Kane Steves, Manager of Orewa Music, hosted another terrific evening at his music shop in Orewa on Wednesday 22nd October 2008 at 7.30pm. Kane was assisted by Rod Moffat who had done a great job preparing handout notes on the subjects covered this evening - priceless, thank you Rod.IMG_0054

After refreshments of cheese and wine whilst Kane entertained us on the Kohler digital piano (based on Korg technology) Kane and Rod covered: split chords and stride style play demonstrating how Richard Clayderman used split chords for his distinctive arpeggio style. Then, using a Korg keyboard, Kane and Rod covered: splitting the upper keyboard for separate ranges of sounds including playing some songs that demonstrated the technique as well as thrilled us with the lovely music; Chord inversions; how to use the powerful and useful Songbook feature on the the more recent touch screen models; and creating basic recordings. The Workshops cover both the older Pa50;Pa60;Pa80 keyboards with the push button operating methodology as well as demonstrating the same topics covered on the current touch screen models Pa500; Pa800 and Pa1X and Pa1X Pro etc. The usefulness of the meetings was demonstrated by the number of 'Korgies' that enthusiastically attended the Workshop. We had Korg users from all over Auckland and it was pleasing that there were 8 members of the North Shore Amateur Organ and Keyboard Club in attendance. Keep checking this Web Site or Orewa Music directly to make sure that you don't miss out on the next Korg Workshop!

Thanks Kane and Rod for a very informative and pleasant evening.


Kane Steves playing the Kohler digital piano at the start of the Workshop

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The enthusiastic 'Korgies' enjoying the evening and learning how to get even
more fun out of their Korg keyboards and Kohler digital pianos.

Photos: Courtesy of Colleen Kerr, Secretary, North Shore Amateur Organ and Keyboard Club

Monday, October 20, 2008

Coffee Day with Shirley Smale - 20th October 2008

What a lovely day that Shirley and Geoff Smale laid on for us. They even ordered perfect Spring weather so that we could admire the Hauraki Gulf from their magnificent Clifftop home!

Photo: Shirley Smale playing her Tyros2 so delightfully.

Geoff was active also with his video camera to capture the great performances that those that played gave. If possible, some video footage will be posted to this Web Site to add a little more interest and 'spice' to this Blog - this may take a few weeks though whilst Geoff edits the tapes (he has promised to take out all the embarrassing bits but...!). It was great to welcome one of our new members, Delyse Whorwood, to her first Coffee Day. It was a delight also to welcome back to Coffee Days Lois Rickman who has been a long-time member of the Club and is now located back on the North Shore. There is a lot of work preparing for such Coffee Days and so a very big thank you to Shirley for all the preparation work it was much appreciated as was the members assisting Shirley with the kitchen duties (particularly Marlene Forrest).

Well this sets a paradigm for our next Coffee Day which will be next month at Peter Brophy's home. We will have a Korg Pa1X; Tyros1; Technics KN6500 and a Yamaha DGX630 digital weighted 88 key ensemble piano - not to mention a heated swimming pool and a BBQ to boot. Gosh ain't we just spoilt rotten! Now why would you not want to be there for this Coffee Day?

Photo: Peter Brophy playing the Korg Pa1X. This was Peter's first Coffee Day attendance and I think Peter enjoyed playing the Korg especially as he has one of these 'babies' at home!

Shirley gave her Korg Pa1X
a good work out!

Marlene Forrest has a Tyros2
at home also!

Top Left: George Watt playing the magnificent Roland AT90 - great playing George
Top Right: Pam Rea playing the Tyros2 - pretty good for a 'Korgie' Pam
Bottom Left: Colleen Kerr playing the Tyros2 - nice arpeggios and chords Colleen
Bottom Right: Jim Nicholson playing the Tyros2 - Jim has a Clavinova and so the Tyros is pretty compatible with the Clavinova which makes playing reasonably straight forward
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Ngaire McRae played the Tyros with applomb given that
Ngaire is a pianist primarily - well done Ngaire
Ken Mahy engrossed with the Roland. This is Ken's
favourite instrument and he has a Roland organ himself
albeit not quite as big as this 'baby'. Nice smooth playing
there Ken
Desiree Barrows gave the Tyros a spin.
Next stop the Albert Hall?
Hey, never mind the music just look at the photographic
and telescopic gear on display here!
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Gordon Sutherland pushing buttons - beats playing anytime!
The four musketeers?
Ngaire McRae; Ngaire Lonergan; Lynsie Dowle; and
Delyse Whorwood enjoying the music

Ken Mahy wondering how he can fit this 'baby' into
a doggy bag to take home with him!
Geoff Smale videoing Ken Mahy as he entertained us.
Watching-on we have George Watt; Jean Watt; and Lois
More of the members enjoying a good 'chit chat' as they listen
to the lovely music in the background.
Pam Rea; Lois Rickman; Ngaire McRae; Ngaire Lonergan;
and Delyse Whorwood in the foreground
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Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Club Night 7th October 2008 (our 31st Birthday!)

Hey, what a great evening! No formal guests this evening but what a display of talent our members demonstrated with some magnificent music making on the Club's: Technics GA3 organ; the Club's Clavinova CVP-305; the brought along Yamaha PSR-S500 and Yamaha Tyros2 keyboards. We had two debut performances this evening, always a nerve-racking occasion for the players, with Dorothy Waddel and new member Colin Crann giving magnificent individual performances on the Clavinova - rhythms/styles/orchestrations the works - well done! A special thanks to Rob and Barbara Powell who were the feature members that finished the evening for us - some great solos and duets - their version of "Picnic" from the movie of the same name was masterly with "Moonglow" acting as a counter melody to the theme music (or was it the other way round?) - very enjoyable. Rob and Barbara bring a lot of gear to make sure the performance is very professional and so the sound was superb as was the playing.                                                                                                                          


As always a big thanks to all the players on the evening and the support staff for making the evening such a raging success on our 31st Birthday meeting - 1977 seems a long time ago now. Also, a big thank you to one of our senior members, Ngaire Lonergan, for doing the honours blowing-out the birthday cake candles with gusto!


Above Photos:
Dorothy Waddel - solo debut at our Club - lovely touch and gorgeous style arrangements
Colin Crann - Colin Crann on his debut at our Club. His style arrangement for "Memory" from the musical "Cats" was brilliant with pussy-cat meows thrown-in to boot! This was an impromptu  performance also to cover for a scheduled player that couldn't make the evening. Well done!

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John Beales syncopating very nicely on his Yamaha PSR-S500

Tony Vinton showing his great touch and
style of play on his Yamaha PSR 9000. Tony played a lovely
arrangement of the Mamas and Papas number "Dream A Little Dream"

John Stent entertained us with his fractious fingers - some nice medleys.
Phyl Briscoe played two lovely semi-classical pieces - very enjoyable.
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Colin Crann on his debut at our Club. His style arrangement
for "Memory" from the musical "Cats" was brilliant with
pussy-cat meows thrown-in to boot! This was an impromptu
performance also to cover for a scheduled player that couldn't
make the evening. Well done!

Rob and Barbara Powell duetting - great music as usual.
Yes, that is Barbara buried beneath the array
of music books!
Barbara soloing on her magnificent Yamaha Tyros2
Rob showing his versality by playing Theatre Style
on the Club's Technics GA3 for an appropriate solo piece
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