Rafael Aguirre Miñarro

Rafael Aguirre Miñarro plays as surprise guest on the 'We Love Music' tour

So how exactly do you respond when someone you've just met, says in a dark music club, 'you have to meet my friend .... he's one of the best guitarists in the world ....'?
A few days later Rafael Aguirre Miñarro offered to play his guitar on my sofa.
Time stands still when Rafa plays. 
You kind of see his hands, his facial expressions, the way he totally gets lost in the music he is creating and you do nothing but feel the sounds coming from his fingertips and sense absolute awe. And I'm not someone who uses that phrase 'awesome' much at all!
Defined as 'one of the most versatile musicians of his generation' it is not difficult to see why this charismatic young man is making huge waves around the music world.

Rafael spends much of his time on planes jetting around the globe from one concert hall to the next. Next March his crazy itinerary includes the legendary Carnegie Hall in New York. When he played Carnegie Hall in 2010 he was obliged to give four encores, in Sao Paulo earlier this year nine encores!!!!
2011 has been an extraordinary year for me. I've met so many wonderful, wonderful people in this Eurovision year but Rafael has, without a doubt, a very special place amongst all the memorable characters that have passed through my life these past 12 months.

'We Love Music' guests are intrigued!
I'm privileged to say he has become my friend and along with his peers from the Robert Schumann School of Music, Luis Regidor (who won second prize for voice at this year's Montreaux Jazz Festival) and Mircea Stefan Gogoncea (winner of the Schmolz and Bickenbach 2011 competition, which Rafael won in 2007 as the first guitarist ever) and numerous other students and teachers of the school, RhineBuzz has grown into a group that includes some of the most gifted young musicians of our time. I truly am spellbound by this. If he is in town Rafael sometimes guests for us on the 'We Love Music' tour. Sitting on a park bench nearby we are delighted to introduce him as he suddenly takes out his guitar to the absolute enchantment of our guests who are just stunned by what happens next.

Tim D. Morand and I are treated to an one-on-one concert on 
Ratinger Strasse after the tour
photo: Patricia Baeza Céspedes 

Düsseldorfers have the extraordinary opportunity to experience this young musician, the Spaniard who has won the most guitar awards of all time, than any other Spaniard. On Sunday December 11 when Rafael plays in Düsseldorf at the Palais Wittgenstein. Tickets are just €8, as this concert is organised by the Department of Culture. You can only reserve tickets by calling 0211 89 96 294 or just be at the venue at 10.30am and hope for a ticket in this beautiful and most intimate hall. The concert begins at 11am.

I, and a whole bunch of RhineBuzzers will be there for sure!

I set up an interview for Rafa along with his professor Joaquín Clerch 
by BBC Radio Two's Ken Bruce during Eurovision week at Museum Kunstpalast 
©Bernd Ahrens Photography

Rafael Aguirre Miñarro on December 11 at 11am
Palais Wittgenstein
Bilkerstr 7-9
40213 Düsseldorf