Here is a very quick overview of my experiences at this years Yamaha Club Weekend 2007. Really this is intended to spark a place for visitors of Yamaha Personal Keyboard Owner to comment on their own experiences and submit photos, so without further ado, lets start…

First of all a quick reminder of what the Yamaha Club actually is. Well to begin with, this is a subscription based bi-monthly magazine based in the United Kingdom, which is edited by the extremely talented Glyn Madden. This motley selection of members though is more than just a magazine. In fact one of the many highlights of being a part of this group is having the chance to visit and indeed stay over at the various events throughout the year.

These can range from a relatively small gathering attending a seminar with demonstrations and tutorials from Glyn himself and people direct from Yamaha UK, however Alvaston Hall is the crown jewel of this event list as each year members gather to again gain advice and help, enjoy the lush setting and accommodation, concerts with many recognised names, dancing, plenty of food and drink, but of course also have a jolly nice weekend to boot!

One of the many knowledgeable wise owls available is Steve Marsden (pictured below), who usually during the week is tirelessly answering the phone at Yamaha UK headquarters for Technical Support or posting away on this very forum, but for this weekend, Steve is presenting guides to some of the most interesting features (and sometimes more complex) of our Yamaha keyboards and digital pianos. Oh and his stella ‘Jingle Bells’ performance has to be seen to be believed! (more on that another time maybe!).

Let us not forget our very gracious host Mr Glyn Madden. It is hard to imagine being a Yamaha keyboard or digital piano owner without having heard of this gentleman. The Yamaha Club has been running for 12 years now and as always, Glyn has been helping Yamaha owners in his plain English, common sense direction, which has always been a great relief to enthusiasts.

While you are taking a break from the various scheduled presentations, why not try one of the Yamaha instruments available by grabbing a pair of headphones and pressing those shiny white keys. It is lovely to see people gathering around an instrument and sharing advice and experiences and certainly this could be seen at the Yamaha Club Weekend.

It was also for many of us, the first time we heard the Regi-Stick Plus in action through the Yamaha Tyros 2 keyboard as presented by James Sargeant. This latest registration stick from Yamaha has a fantastic selection of new voices and setups that really does add an amazing variety of impressive range to your instrument. You can find out more in YPKO Podcast #8.

Of course the day is ended with a selection of performers for the concert. This year featuring Peter Baartmans, Tony Stace (as pictured below), James Sargeant, Howard Beaumont, Ryan Edwards and many more…

It was a delight for me to again see in person so many familiar faces from Yamaha UK, The Yamaha Club and of course members of this website. This was my third Alvaston and I can certainly see from the interest at the event that the relationship between Yamaha Personal Keyboard Owner and the Yamaha Club is an important one that deserves to last.

Thank you to Glyn, Cathy, Yamaha and all the people who worked oh so very hard all weekend to make sure everything ran smoothly and made it extremely memorable. Next year Alvaston will be held in December and again I should be there with maybe a presentation of my own.

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James Woodcock

James is a Freelance Journalist, Copywriter, Author, Blogger & Podcaster specialising in gaming, gadgets and technology, both retro and modern. Ever since he experienced the first controllable pixel movement on the television screen, he has been entranced by the possibilities and rewarding entertainment value generated from these metal and plastic boxes of delight. Writing hundreds of articles, including commentary and reviews on various gaming platforms, whilst also interviewing well-known industry figures for popular online publications. Creator of the ScummVM Music Enhancement Project and host of the Game & Gadget Podcast. View his portfolio here: James Woodcock's Portfolio.

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