David Heyes, Wells specialist double bass tutor, was the featured composer, juror, soloist and teacher at Galicia Graves 2017 from 17th-19th February. Held at the Conservatorio de Culleredo, in Galicia, Spain, the competition and workshop attracted young bassists and teachers from throughout Spain and Portugal for an amazing weekend of bass playing, workshops, lessons and concerts.
Each competitor performed at least one piece for unaccompanied double bass by David, who also gave a lecture-recital about the competition pieces. In total 22 works were performed, alongside another seven pieces in the final concert. David also directed the junior and intermediate bass ensembles, gave lessons, often in his own version of ‘Spanish’ and the entire weekend was wreathed in laughter, good humour, wonderful camaraderie and great bass playing.
David was able to talk about his work at Wells, particularly with teachers from Spain and Portugal, and has received invitations to play and teach in both countries in 2017/18. His recital, held in the Gustav Mahler Auditorium at the Conservatorio, included five of his own works – two world and three Spanish premieres – and one work by Tony Osborne which featured soprano Sarah Poole, David and the other four tutors. The sunny climes of Galicia added to the good humour of the weekend and David is planning to invite Spanish bassist-composer Simon Garcia, the Galicia Graves director, to Somerset in the autumn to celebrate his 40th birthday. The international links continue to be strengthened.