By Recreation Therapist Jim Carlson
California State Prison – Sacramento
Internationally acclaimed guitarists Tommy Emmanuel and Martin Taylor recently included California State Prison-Sacramento (CSP-SAC) as a concert venue on their six-week “The Colonel and the Governor” USA performance tour.
Following a full house concert at Sacramento’s Crest Theater on Sunday evening, Jan. 18, Tommy and Martin arrived at CSP-SAC’s front gate early Monday morning to participate in the prison’s Creative Arts Program (CAP).
They presented a one and one-half hour concert to 35 inmates and about 15 staff in the Facility A Library. Their amazing talent, irrepressible energy and gracious spirit transported everyone present far beyond the physical confines of the institution grounds.
The musical numbers were punctuated by numerous standing ovations and expressions of pure enjoyment. Everyone left the library with smiling faces that reflected the gift that they had received from these two exceptional artists.
The impact of their presence continues to be felt throughout Facility A on the yard, in the housing units and in staff offices through conversations and positive attitudes. A huge “thank you” goes to Tommy and Martin for including us in their very busy performance schedule.
Members of the CAP classical guitar class taught by guitarist Gabriel Becker opened the concert with a concerto for four guitars. Mr. Becker has been a volunteer teacher in CAP for more than three years.