Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Discussions relating to the classical guitar which don't fit elsewhere.
DonaldSauter
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Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by DonaldSauter » Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:49 pm

I've put up a pdf of a book of interviews with Sophocles Papas called "Guitar Teaching In The United States - The Life and Work of Sophocles Papas". Papas was a "lifelong friend" of Andres Segovia (wikipedia), and there are tons of Segovia reminiscences.

http://www.donaldsauter.com/sophocles_papas.pdf

For some background on Papas, your best bet is a thread in this group from not so long ago:

viewtopic.php?t=98409

Lawler
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by Lawler » Mon Apr 17, 2017 10:39 pm

Thank you, Donald. ...got the pdf and will enjoy reading it. My first teacher, John Griggs, used the Papas method book. I remember Mr. Griggs saying that he had been a student of Sophocles Papas.

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spanishguitarmusic
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by spanishguitarmusic » Mon Apr 17, 2017 11:58 pm

Thank you for the pdf! I will be a great read!

Joe de V
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by Joe de V » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:07 am

Thank you for letting us enjoy that document. One very popular piece that was used by Mr.papas is the Malagena by Ernesto Lecuona.
I have kept it as part of my simple but beautiful repertoire for guitar.I would love to have more of his classical arrangements for the CG.

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petermc61
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by petermc61 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:33 am

I am lucky to have a guitar once owned by many years by Sophocles. Lovely instrument, with some real history attached to it.

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David Norton
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by David Norton » Tue Apr 18, 2017 1:59 am

Pure gold, Donald. Thanks for this memoir.
David Norton
Salt Lake City, UT

dory
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by dory » Tue Apr 18, 2017 2:42 am

Thank you very much. I am going to download it.
Dory

astro64
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by astro64 » Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:49 am

Fascinating! Thanks for posting it. Lots of good stories and interesting history.

cliffbryant
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by cliffbryant » Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:27 pm

Thanks for posting this! Growing up in the Washington D.C. area and hanging around the guitar society there as a youngster I was able to meet Sophocles Papas on a few occasions. Even played for him once....

Luis_Br
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by Luis_Br » Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:19 pm

Thanks for sharing.
Are there videos from him at Youtube?
I've tried to google him, but all I find is other people playing his arrangements...

CathyCate
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by CathyCate » Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:22 pm

Thank You, Don. A wonderful slice of guitar history.

DonaldSauter
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by DonaldSauter » Mon Apr 24, 2017 7:35 pm

Thanks for the positive comments; you're all quite welcome.

I just reread the book after many years - should've done that before posting, haha. Mainly wanted to say that if you're not inclined to read the whole thing, I suggest the "Third Interview" (page 54) as probably the most interesting. It deals with Segovia's first U.S. concerts, and how Papas and Segovia buddied up. The interviewer pumps Papas regarding other guitarists who performed in the U.S. in the first half of the 20th century. Papas also explains how Segovia's worry about his string supply during the war found its way to the Du Pont chemical company.

http://www.donaldsauter.com/sophocles_papas.pdf

If you read the whole set of four interviews, be prepared for some repetition. Some points come up several times, and you might find this a little annoying -- or maybe a little amusing.

P.S. Cathy, you'll find the Clare Callahan connection on page 99.

DonaldSauter
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by DonaldSauter » Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:02 pm

The footnote on Vahdah Olcott-Bickford (page 116) made a statement that intrigues me: "As a young woman, she gave many concerts throughout United States. With Caruso as one of the judges, she won a gold medal for her performance in a competition held in New York City."

My web searches turned up nothing on this. Can anyone do any better? I'd be much obliged.

The footnote also mentioned: It is quite possible that Mrs. Bickford was the first person to make a commercially-issued recording of the solo classical guitar. The interested reader is directed to a pair of articles titled "Women, Guitars, and Recordings," which appeared in the Spring and Fall, 1976, issues of The Rosette, the official bulletin of the Washington Guitar Society.

The question of early VOB recordings has come up before in this group. The closest thing that I can turn up is a reference to a Victor recording by Vahdah Olcott-Bickford of La Golondrina, 4/3/1916. But I don't see the recording anywhere on the web.

CathyCate
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Re: Sophocles Papas, American guitar teacher and friend of Segovia

Post by CathyCate » Wed Apr 26, 2017 7:54 pm

DonaldSauter wrote:Thanks for the positive comments; you're all quite welcome.

I just reread the book after many years - should've done that before posting, haha. Mainly wanted to say that if you're not inclined to read the whole thing, I suggest the "Third Interview" (page 54) as probably the most interesting. It deals with Segovia's first U.S. concerts, and how Papas and Segovia buddied up. The interviewer pumps Papas regarding other guitarists who performed in the U.S. in the first half of the 20th century. Papas also explains how Segovia's worry about his string supply during the war found its way to the Du Pont chemical company.

http://www.donaldsauter.com/sophocles_papas.pdf

If you read the whole set of four interviews, be prepared for some repetition. Some points come up several times, and you might find this a little annoying -- or maybe a little amusing.

P.S. Cathy, you'll find the Clare Callahan connection on page 99.
Thanks, Donald, for the post and the heads up. For those of us who love CG trivia, this is more fun than a barrel of monkeys!

Papas made reference to some man in MN who taught Sharon Isbin guitar early on. My radar says it is guitar guru and premier coach, Jeffrey Van of St. Paul. My latest info is that a few select students are still fortunate enough to have him for guidance.

I will keep reading and trying to tease out more details. Whee! :D

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