Guitar Club - Pursuing the sound of excellence
It is 12:45 p.m., and Leighton K., a member of the guitar club, is serenading a vibrant crowd with his skillful attention to the acoustic guitar. The audience pays close attention as he plays a variety of selections in a five-minute period. He is performing in a noon-hour "Spotlight" which features many members of the guitar club, where everything from Classical and Flamenco to Heavy Metal and other new Contemporary Rock is being played.
The guitar club at Garden Valley Collegiate, a high school in Winkler, Manitoba, has been an integral part of the school since its inception five years ago by teacher Mr. David Stobbe. The intention of the club is to bring guitarists together and to help them develop their skills and to share what they are learning with others. Bill Dowling, one of the other teacher coordinators has stated that "A student would be involved mainly for fun. It's fun to play. The problem with guitar-playing is that our popular culture has turned into a very competitive thing which means that people who are learning feel quite intimidated and shy about playing in front of others".
The organization's objective is to eliminate this and to create an environment in which a rewarding experience can be obtained. Although the club does not meet on a regular basis, the individuals involved receive an opportunity to learn a wide variety of chords, techniques and ideas; this allows the students to express themselves with the instrument more assertively. It is therefore the attempt of the club to pursue the sound of excellence without implying competitiveness and still maintain the factor of enjoyment.