Next month, the Peabody Institute will open its doors to the community for the sixth annual Fret Festival, a one-day event featuring workshops, lectures, master classes, ensembles, and a concert by world-class guitarists.
The annual Guitar Department event was first created in an effort to connect with the community and build interest in the guitar program at Peabody. It has steadily grown over the years, and Preparatory Guitar Department Chair Zane Forshee plans to continue the momentum with this year’s event.
“Fret Fest has something for ver y young guitarists, intermediate students, and adults,” says Forshee. “There’s something for everyone.”
In past years, young students have learned the inner workings of their instrument by constructing cardboard guitars. Last year, one high school brought promising guitar students for ensemble coaching and a workshop. This year, Forshee says five high schools from Maryland and Virginia will bring dozens of students.
Fret Fest is unique in that it encourages collaboration between the Peabody Conservatory and Preparatory, notes Forshee. With master classes taught by Conservatory guitar faculty artist Julian Gray, Fret Fest fosters community within Peabody and throughout the region.
This year’s Fret Fest offers a wide variety of events, including a workshop highlighting styles of guitar music across the United States, jazz and classical guitar workshops, and a concert by renowned guest artist Solo Duo.
The sixth annual Fret Festival is Sunday, March 1, from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm. The cost is $30.
— Carin Morrell