Hot Club Français for solo guitar composed by Gary Ryan 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…”