Classical Guitar Study Guides 
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Classical Guitar Technique
from Foundation to Virtuosity (2 vols)
Stanley Yates

With a Foreword by Angelo Gilardino

Blank Practice Grids

Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity vol 1

  Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity vol 2
Part 1—Foundation (198 pp)
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Part 2—Mastery and Virtuosity (238 pp)
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From the Foreword

"With this work, Stanley Yates goes beyond the traditional concept of the guitar method or the guitar technique treatise. The history of the instrument includes outstanding examples, but none that constitutes an adequate precedent to this book from the Anglo-American master..."
Angelo Gilardino


Peer endorsements for Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity

“This monumental work by Stanley Yates is both a lucid summation of guitar methodologies and an innovative advancement of instrumental theory. Read it and learn.”
Mark Delpriora, Chair Guitar Department Manhattan School of Music / Instructor Undergraduate Studies The Juilliard School

"His love of both the expressive possibilities of our instrument and the tactile experience of playing it are as obvious as his mastery of the process by which virtuosity is achieved. This book may well be THE indispensable method.” Stephen Aron, Chair Guitar Department, Oberlin Conservatory of Music

"The great guitarists make it look easy. The question is how did they achieve such a high level? Finally, the answer is found in Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity. Unlock the path to developing a graceful and musically expressive playing technique."
Bill Piburn, Editor, Fingerstyle Guitar Journal

“The product of a lifetime of self-critical, analytical, and insightful artistry and teaching, Yates’ magnum opus is the most thoroughly comprehensive guitar technique manual I’ve ever seen.
Dr. Douglas James, Chair Guitar Department, Appalachian State University

This is a ‘go to’ book that comes along once in a generation. Decades of thought, analysis, insight, and successful teaching are evident on every page. Classical Guitar Technique will become standard for students and teachers alike—an incredible resource.
Dr. Michael Quantz
University of Texas Rio Grande Valley




Yet Another Technique Book?

Classical guitarists have ready access to an overwhelming number of resources that deal with the playing technique of their instrument. Still, while many of these resources have much to offer, I know of none that provides both exercise material and a detailed method of making that material truly useful. The assumption always seems to be that the student or the teacher already knows how to go about internalizing an optimal version of an exercise, knows how to structure this work over day to day practice, and has already developed an approach to absorbing a wide range of material quickly. Furthermore, technique books tend to be either prescriptive (they tell us what we should practice but not how or why) or comprehensive (they provide exhaustive catalogues of finger combinations but don’t discriminate as to which ones are truly useful). And, I know of no existing resource that meaningfully addresses the most important, and most elusive, technical aspect of our instrument: musically-expressive sound.

Intended for intermediate and advanced players, Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity, offers a step by step guide to optimizing the basic foundation of playing technique and to developing it to the highest levels of advanced playing in a day to day sequence of short, clearly explained practice sessions. In 81 progressive lessons, CGT provides a comprehensive and precisely-structured approach to the full development of playing technique in a time-efficient way.

  • in two parts, Part 1 is devoted to refinement and optimization of the fundamental movement-forms required for playing the guitar; Part 2 develops the advanced techniques required for mastery and virtuosity

  • each lesson can be assimilated over a 2-3 week period with 10-15 minutes of daily practice

  • the 81 lessons form a progressive sequence in two inter-related streams—Right-Hand and Left-Hand—practiced concurrently for a total of 20-30 minutes of daily practice

  • exercises are distributed over 3, 4 or 6-day practice cycles with detailed Practice Routines that outline the work to be done on each day of a cycle

  • concise instructions describe exactly how to practice each exercise

  • lessons include musical context—a musical passage or a recommended standard repertoire study or other appropriate piece that fully internalizes and maintains a technique once the lesson exercises have been assimilated

  • for most lessons, a concluding Notes section clarifies counterintuitive aspects and pedagogical issues relating to the technique being studied, along with the methodology behind the exercises (for those who wish to read it)

  • Practice Grids are provided to help keep track of day to day practice  

As with most of my publications, in writing Classical Guitar Technique from Foundation to Virtuosity I've attempted to write a book I was once looking for myself as a student of the guitar, but couldn't find...

SY (10-2016)


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