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Postponement of Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase concerns local luthiers
by Lynda Carson (tenantsrule [at] yahoo.com)
Tuesday Jul 28th, 2020 7:29 PM
Master Luthier, Michihiro Matsuda of Matsuda Guitars
sm_matsuda-2745.jpg
Postponement of Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase concerns local luthiers

By Lynda Carson - July 28, 2020

A few days ago, due to the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic raging across the nation, Acoustic Guitar reported that the Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase (WILS) for 2020 has postponed its popular event that was to occur during the weekend of October 23-25.

The postponement of the Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase (WILS) is of great concern to the many luthiers/guitar builders who were scheduled to appear at the event to showcase their handmade built guitars and stringed instruments.

The postponed event in Woodstock, NY, would have allowed musicians and others to try out the many beautiful handmade guitars and stringed instruments built by the numerous luthiers/instrument makers, to see how they may sound and feel when performing music with them.

Reportedly, according to the organizers of the Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase, they stated, “We have tried to move ahead with planning for a greatly reduced, and hopefully safe, gathering but the worsening coronavirus pandemic situation in the United States makes it obvious that to try and hold the Luthiers Showcase in October would be ill-advised, and possibly dangerous for all who attend. The health and safety of all must be our primary concern, and we would be unable to offer the full experience and quality presentation that the community has come to expect from WILS. We hope to offer some virtual events and presentations this year over the weekend of October 23–25.”


Luthier Michihiro Matsuda of Matsuda Guitars

Master Luthier, Michihiro Matsuda of Matsuda Guitars in Redwood City, CA, is one of the fine master luthiers/guitar builders listed as one of the many exhibitors at the postponed Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase.

Michihiro Matsuda, a.k.a. Michi, who apprenticed with Oakland’s Master Luthier Ervin Somogyi, is very concerned about the effects of the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic raging across the nation, resulting in the postponement of the Woodstock luthier’s showcase.

Earlier to day I heard from Michi of Matsuda Guitars, and Michi said, “I planned to be an exhibiter in the Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase 2020 show. I was very sad to hear that they had to cancel this show.  I was optimistic at the beginning of this Covid-19 situation.  I thought it may get better around summer, but my expectations were wrong.

Guitar shows, especially the Woodstock Invitational Luthiers Showcase, and other luthier/guitar builder shows are important for luthiers and boutique makers. They provide us with opportunities to meet people, and are the best way for people to check out our guitars and try them with their own hands. However, this show model is not safe now. We should have social distancing to protect ourselves. I do not know how I can offer people the opportunity to try my guitars safely.

Before this Covid-19 situation, one successful guitar show model was attracting many people to come and having many demos and performances. I was hoping we could get back to where we were. I worry about how long it will take to get back. But, now I am starting to think that we may not be able to get back to where we were. It may be time to rethink what a successful guitar show means under this new situation. This makes me nervous and confused because I know that I have to make some changes, but I do not know how.”

In case you missed it, the website for Matsuda Guitars may be found by clicking here.
 
The coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic that keeps getting worse, has resulted in musicians, guitar builders, filmmakers and others in the world of arts and entertainment to seek loans through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to help their businesses and employees out, during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In Oakland, the Oakland Symphony has performed on-line with Zoom, while the musicians have been sheltering-in-place during the pandemic.

Meanwhile, the effects of the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic continues to make life much more difficult for Bay Area guitar builders and musicians, as the pandemic appears to have no end in sight.

Lynda Carson may be reached at tenantsrule [at] yahoo.com

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