James Boyd - Master Guitarist
James Boyd is one of the finest classical guitarists playing today. The great maestro Julian Bream summed up his unique artistry - ‘James’ has the art of communication. You can’t teach that ….it’s a gift….’ Long ago he awarded James the Julian Bream prize in recognition of this extraordinary talent.
These days James releases a small number of concerts each year. Increasingly he works with private clients to create extraordinary musical experiences in unique settings. From a concert in a seventeenth century courtyard in a hidden Cornish valley to the time he took his yacht Concord to the Aldeburgh Festival to give the premiere of Jonathan Dove’s The Immortal Ship, James derives true delight in creating rare performances.
James is a passionate advocate for new music, working with some of the finest composers. He has commissioned and premiered many new works.
The Royal Academy of Music has elected him an associate in recognition of his distinguished contribution to music.
James loves walking and sailing. His classic boat Concord of Mersea is a muse that provides escape and inspiration. Passionate about learning, he has embarked on many journeys from cold water swimming to walking a slackline. A creative first and foremost he he can often be found carving wood, building furniture and dream like creations for his children. Fine wine, good food and good company are a triad he likes to return to as often as possible.
EVOCATIONS and ECHOES
Playing at Cley Church has special significance for James. The saltmarshes of this coast
have been a source of inspiration for him since he was a child. His first award winning
album Shapes of Sleep was made in response to the beauty and space of the no mans land between the tides of Cley and Wells.
In this concert he journeys through music from many centuries and countries. From the
grandeur of Bach to homages for Debussy and Manuel de Falla, he raises echoes of the
guitar’s many voices and returns to some of the music that first set fire to his imagination
when he was growing up here in North Norfolk.
Throughout James’ career the rare experience of his playing has been commented on by the critics.
‘The wizard guitarist James Boyd held us enthralled’ - The Times.
Would that there were more classical guitarists around with Boyd’s taste and imagination’ - Gramophone
But perhaps it is the comments of audience members that capture most accurately James’ unique gift.
‘I will remember your performance for the rest of my life’ - audience member, Delft Chamber
Music Festival, Holland.
‘That concert…' I said to my wife ‘We’ll remember this for the rest of our lives’ - Audience member at a privately curated event at Barningham Hall, England.