The next chapter of development on our web site centres on “Music for Everyone” concerts by the Robert Luse Guitar Ensemble. Presented by the Ministry of Culture from 1975 – 84, this period predated such present day cultural landmarks The Esplanade and the S.S.O. Rob entered (re-entered, in the case of ‘cellist wife Sylvia Goh, who he met at the Peabody Conservatory in the U.S.A.) to the acclaim of aiding the “greening the cultural desert”. Although largely an imaginary media fixation, this had the advantage of opening up Singapore’s then premier entertainment facilities, Victoria Concert Hall and Singapore Conference, plus full government media support for our fledgling ensemble. Challenges can work wonders and each year’s show managed updates and improvements on the previous shows. Attendance was invariably 90% plus. Full critical reportage gave cause for reflection, as well as a measure of satisfaction that; somehow, we ‘pulled it off.’ Above all (in hindsight) state of the art recording facilities were invariably at our disposal. (Cassette tapes, though low-fi in the extreme by today’s standards of digital ‘perfection,’ do help to drive home the ambience of a bit of Singapore’s music history – an era had come and gone, one in which I and my dedicated students played a part. In the words of Groucho Marks, in our hour of need, we had ‘something on the ball.’
The present uploads are from the final year of the “Music for “Everyone Series.” Although we were unaware that, subsequent to 1984, the series was to be replaced by cultural activity on a grander scale, it is fair to say that this concert, both in terms of diversity and quality, marks the group’s high water mark. Thanks for contributions by conductor Joe Peters and (in his only appearance as flute soloist) no less a notable than Singapore’s premier composer Poon YewTien. Special mention also to Robin Macatangay, whose ‘Singapore Years’ contributed to a successful and ongoing chosen profession as jazz guitarist.
John Wong, a student of Robert Luse, performs six pieces from the Luse classic guitar method.
A comment by Nobuko Hoysoya, prominent Japanese mandola player and former guitar student of Rob:
Hi Rob sensei!
I saw John Wong’s Video. Oh my! His fingers are just as Luse Methods’. How has he mastered all those techniques? Isn’t it that your son made a CG video with Rob’s hands and John’s face and torso? I can see John is enjoying the music from his heart. He is playing so musically. He is even expressing the witty and mischievous atmosphere of your pieces very naturally. This is the Luse world I like very very much.