Master Class Info

What is a master class?

A master class is a when a master musician (like Pepe Romero or one of the other artists in the Portland International Guitar Series) listens to four pre-selected students who perform one piece live in front of the master class instructor and other auditors and students attending the class. The instructor will work with each student on an individual basis and might discuss musical interpretation, guitar technique, performance anxiety or whatever is relevant to further the student's development as a player.  The lesson is given in an open room or performance hall so everyone attending the class can learn from the advice given.  You do not need to be a performer in the class to benefit from a master class.  In fact, many times it is best to attend a master class as an auditor without the distraction of needing to prepare to perform so you focus on what is being taught and you can take notes. Usually, there will be a Q&A section of the class where auditors may ask specific questions.  Master classes benefit all levels of guitarist from beginning to professional.

To order tickets to a master class as an auditor, select the artist you want from the ticket sales page link below and select master class audit in the ticket type drop down menu.  Not all concert artists this season in the Portland International Guitar Sereis will teach a master class.  Master class audit tickets are included in season tickets.

 Order Tickets

To be considered as a student in a master class, you must submit a short bio or description of your playing history, and a short audio or visual recording of one piece preferably the one you will be performing in the class at least ONE MONTH prior to the date of the master class.  Submit the MP3, YouTube link, or other form of media to info@usclassicguitar.org and put "Master Class Audition" in the subject heading.  The master class students will be selected 2 weeks prior to the master class date.  If you're not selected, don't be discouraged and do try out again for a future class.  All ages are welcome. The fee to perform in a master class is $75 and must be paid directly after a student is accepted to a class.  Upon acceptance, a representative will contact you to take payment over the phone give instructions on where to mail the check.  Master class performer fee is non refundable. 

Some general tips for students performing in the class:

1.  Select a single piece from the classical guitar repertoire that you know well. The performance doesn't have to be perfect but a master class student should not select a piece that is too difficult beyond their playing ability and they should not perform a piece if they are still learning it.  It is always better to choose an easier piece that you can play well.   These classes are designed to polish and improve pieces that have already been learned.  If you're working with an instructor ask them if they feel you are ready to perform in a master class.

2.  The piece should not be too long and if it is part of a larger work then just select one movement. 

3.  Always have at least one extra copy of the music for the instructor to view during the performance and make sure it is a copy where you don't mind if notes are added directly to the score.  Have a pencil ready for notes.

4.  Each student performing will have approximately 25 minutes of the class.  Try to think of specific questions you might have before you come to the class.  

5.  Know the piece well enough that you can start at any point and not just the beginning.  If you have the piece memorized, also be able to read the music directly from the score from any point.

6.  It is a good idea to do a little research to see if the piece you're playing has been recorded or transcribed by the master class instructor.  It isn't necessary to only pick a piece that they have worked with but if you do it is best to play their transcription or edition out of respect. 

 

Here is a master class video that we presented a few years back so you can get an idea of the format.