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For a classical guitarist rooted in the Segovia tradition, standing up and playing with a strap hints at some kind of heresy, even though for electric or acoustic guitarists standing up and playing is perfectly normal. After 35 years of performing and practicing on a chair with a footstool, my lower back was ready for a change. This led me to develop the Stand Up Guitar. Originally I just built it for my own use, but as I've shared this design with other players, I've found a lot of interest. Now I'm making it available to the public.

The Stand Up design starts with my Signature Model, and then, to improve the balance of the instrument, I give the body an extra taper from top to bottom. That is, I make the "treble" side deeper than the "bass" side. This lets the guitar tilt back slightly and hang against the chest with more balance, stability and comfort, and gives the player a better view of the strings and fingerboard. It's a subtle change, but an effective one. The ergonomics are good for a player seated conventionally with a foot stool as well.

Standing up to play is interesting in a number of ways; it's immediately better for the lower back - years of classical guitar posture can lead to a variety aches and pains, and standing can really help. Also, standing changes your relationship with the audience. It's easier to look around, easier to talk to the audience, look them in the eye. The freedom to move around on stage is a whole new world for a classical guitarist, and can offer a new dynamic with the audience. Also, standing while playing can give more strength to rhythm, and having the option of standing makes playing with other musicians - such as a flautist or singer - a more satisfying partnership.

Of course a nylon string guitar isn't only for classical guitarists. All kinds of players are getting excited about the beautiful sound of nylon in jazz, rock, pop, fusion, and the comfort of standing or sitting on a high stool facilitates all kinds of new musical possibilities.

Some players take to the new posture immediately, and some need little while to adjust. After a few days or even just a few hours I think you'll find that even the most difficult repertoire can be played just fine. And the Stand Up model sounds just as good as a standard Signature.

I hope you can try it out. Personally, I have changed over completely, both for performing and practicing. I will not be going back.
 

Features & Options

Anniversary Model
Double top
Truss rod
French Polish
Custom 615mm Short Scale
Short Scale
Stand-up model
Crossover: narrow neck

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Kenny's original announcement/blog posting for the Stand up model.

Artists using the Stand-up model: Eva Beneke, James Robinson

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