Hot Club Français is inspired by the music of Django Reinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli, who formed the Quintette du Hot Club de France in 1934.
Manus Noble, a former guitar student of Ryan’s at the Royal College of Music, London, commissioned the piece as a result of him winning the Ivor Mairants Guitar Award in 2011. Noble had regularly attended Guitar France, a guitar summer school which Ryan directed in Normandy, France from 2006-2013. This gave Ryan the idea for a French-inspired piece which was also influenced by the Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos who re-visited Paris in 1934 having spent several years there in the 1920s. Ryan says:
“I had a rather fanciful idea that Villa-Lobos might even have heard the Quintette play, so towards
the end of the piece I have included a short, rhythmically adapted chord sequence from Prelude No.5
which blends well in the style…”