City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Declan Zapala's Fusion Guitar Review

By Barnaby Miln - Posted on 18 August 2013

Declan Zapala
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Albeniz, Asturias (Lyanda); Bach, Prelude from Cello Suite No 1; Jobim, Felicidade; Brouwer, Elogio de la Danza; Domeniconi, Koyunbaba; Roche, Roundabout/The Perc-U-lator; Zapala, Broken Rhapsody.
Declan Zapala (guitar)

Declan Zapala is a busy concert guitarist who has recently completed a Master's degree in Performance from London's Royal College of Music. Indeed one of his friends from College Hall was in the audience to verify his undoubted talent. He was surprised but delighted to see her.

His concert began with traditional guitar music - famous pieces from Albeniz and Bach and progressed through more specialised Jobim's Happiness to Brouwer and Domeniconi. It was when he changed to his percussion guitar that the real Declan became apparent.

Declan has specialised in percussive guitar by which he means, in simple terms, the banging on the instrument as well as the plucking and stroking. He told us that people could not believe he did not wear some sort of ring on his finger - and demonstrated how he hit the guitar on the joint of the finger where there is little or no flesh. To do this accurately and at considerable speed takes some talent when you think about it.

All became clear when Declan played Eric Roche's two percussive pieces. Time was running out and we had to choose between the two works Declan himself had written. We chose his Broken Rhapsody. It's not surprising it went viral on YouTube. It is well worth seeking out.

Perhaps more than anything it was Declan's charm in the way he spoke about his fascinating music that made his first ever Fringe concert such a joy for his audience.