Four guitars, one evening.
Wait, no, let's re-examine that. Four exceptional guitars, one brain-sizzling evening.
International Guitar Night (IGN) is rolling through Whistler, bringing with it Adrian Legg, Marco Pereira, Lulo Reinhardt and IGN founder Brian Gore. Haven't heard of any of these people?
Well, that's kind of the point. Gore founded IGN in 1995 as a forum for the world's finest guitarists and composers, many of whom were unknown in the mainstream, to play for audiences keen on discovering new music.
Gore says, "I've had a chance to bring people that are deserving of a bigger audience to new discoveries for audiences, and in the process have been able to be in the company of players who are really, quite honestly, some of the best on the planet. It's a pretty nice deal."
For the record, Gore is an accomplished and highly respected artist, often called the "guitar poet" for incorporating lyrical elements into his compositions. Inspired by such lyrical novelists as Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Vladimir Nabokov, he'll create soundscapes to their stories or use their poetic language as a basis for his own melodies.
"In a way, you try to make the song seem like a piece of poetry or have a melody line that sings, like a vocalist singing a song," he says.
Through this, Gore says he's become more spiritually aware. The music has allowed him to explore the deep emotional landscapes that are, or should be, the inspiration for artistic expression.
"I hate to say it but I'm kind of a sensitive guy that way, so it's been a way to make more feelings more palpable and come to terms with things, encapsulate and understand it," he says. "The nice thing is, once you do that, you're able to transmit those feelings to the audience through these songs."
That is, in a way, why he started the IGN. There was a passion in the way Pereira plays that more people, he felt, needed to know about it. It's become a way for people to make new discoveries in guitar music about players.
"Guitar's a real way for people to connect. It's a place for people of common bond because once someone picks up a guitar, there's something familiar in that act and there's something familiar in the sharing of that too," he says.
For each tour, IGN founder Brian Gore invites a new cast of guitar luminaries to join him for special evenings of solos, duets and quartets that highlight the dexterity and diversity within the world of acoustic guitar.
Legg, Pereira, Reinhardt and Gore will all bring their own compositions, playing lead while the others join in along the way. The improvisational nature of the shows means that one show is never the same. The six live albums that have resulted from the tours - the most recent of which, released earlier this year, features all four on the current tour - is merely an example of what's possible at one of these shows, rather than reproducing exactly what you'll see here.
"Every single live album is a kind of new experience and every concert is a new experience for the audience as well," Gore says.
At 3 p.m., before the performance, Gore will lead a guitar workshop geared toward the experienced player. Along with providing some insight into his influences and approach to composition and arrangements, the workshop will provide an overview of basic and advanced techniques in guitar playing that are "guaranteed" to further the growth and development of participants' musical knowledge.
Workshop fee is $50 per person. Tickets for both the workshop and the show are $65. Tickets for the show are $24, or $21 for seniors and students, and $19 for Whistler Arts Council members.