Invocación: Impression of Spain - Music for Guitar
Since making his debut in November 2005, Scottish guitarist Ian Watt has toured throughout Europe, the US and China. His recitals have included performances in venues such as the ‘Schubert Hall’ (Vienna Concert House), St John’s Smith Square (London), and Glasgow Royal Concert Hall. Watt has also appeared at several leading international music festivals including the Mikulov International Guitar Festival (Czech Republic), London International Guitar Festival, Sound Festival (Aberdeen) and Big Guitar Weekend (Glasgow).
An advocate of contemporary music, Watt has collaborated with a number of composers including Gordon McPherson, Rory Boyle and most recently John McLeod whose Guitar Concerto, written for and dedicated to the guitarist, Watt premiered in March 2010. Watt has also performed for Sir Peter Maxwell Davies as part of the composer’s 75th birthday celebration concert series (2009) held in Glasgow, performing Davies’s rarely heard song cycle for voice and guitar, Dark Angels.
In addition to performances on BBC Radio, Watt featured in a BBC documentary that included a performance of Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez. His performances have also been broadcast on television and radio in the USA, Austria and Holland. Ian Watt attended the City of Aberdeen Music School and currently is a student of Allan Neave at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
“This is an excellent recording, in every sense… my appreciation to Ian Watt this is a guitarist about whom we will be hearing a lot in the future.”
"Youthful guitarist Ian Watt may have spent his formative years in Scotland's somewhat less than sultry north-east, but he obviously feels a natural affinity for the musical culture of the sun-drenched Iberian peninsula, and this recital finds him tackling works by leading Spainish composers such as Tarrega, Rodrigo and Albeniz. The latter never actually penned any works for the guitar, but many of his piano pieces were subsequently transcribed for the instrument, including 'Chants d'Espagne' - the evocative five-part suite which emerges as the highlight of this fine new Nimbus CD." Kevin Bryan
"Guitarist Ian Watt offers a lively Spanish program... Watt plays this difficult program superbly." Paul Turok, Turok's Choice NY
Introducing a new relationship between Nimbus Alliance and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
Things are afoot in Glasgow. Hot-on-the-heels of the change of name, from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland has announced it will be releasing a series of recordings in partnership with Nimbus Records. Principal John Wallace sees the business of recording as an integral part of the practical, professional training for young musicians today: ‘Classical audiences of the future need to be young, and they need [to be able to hear] young artists. Nimbus want to find the young artists of the future. Wallace sees the current market as something of a chaotic mess: ‘lots of people are making records now, but they’re all virtually invisible; what you need is proper, international distribution.’ Material will be available for download, while physical product will only be pressed on demand and managed at the Nimbus short run facility in Monmouth.
Nimbus’ Adrian Farmer proves a like-minded partner: ‘We realised that music students these days need to know a lot more about how to use the contemporary tools that are available to them, not only so that they get a result that’s good, but that they then know how to market that result in a musical-industrial environment that has virtually collapsed around their ears.
There is no longer a tightly-focused network of agents, for example, who would once have shepherded them through the early stages of their career. They have to do all of this by themselves now and, while music colleges have been attempting to do the best they can, they haven’t seen this as a fundamental part of the curriculum.’
The partnership is the first in this country between label and institution, and will engender three separate strands. Those orchestral recordings, recitals, operas, dramas and even films that are judged to have been especially successful will be chosen for release. As part of the curriculum, students will learn about making recordings by going into the studio regularly themselves; those selected both by the Conservatoire and by the student body will be released. A third strand allows students to record and manufacture bespoke ‘calling card’ to buy at manufacturing cost to sell at concerts or offer as downloads themselves. Rights in the recordings will remain with the Conservatoire or students, the initial expectation is that there will be roughly twelve releases a year.
Taken from the article in Classical Music Magazine, October 2011