Ivor Mairants was well known throughout the world to guitarists of all styles. After over 50 years as a professional guitarist, teacher, composer and leading UK musical instrument retailer, he devoted the last few years of his life to composing and writing for the guitar.
Born in 1908 in Rypin, Poland. Ivor Mairants came with his family to the United Kingdom in 1913. He took up the banjo at the age of 15 and became a professional musician at the age of 20.
From the 1930's he was a featured banjoist and then guitarist of many of Britain's leading dance bands including those of Ambrose, Roy Fox, Lew Stone, Geraldo and Ted Heath. In the 1960's and 1970's his outstanding guitar playing was often heard on television, radio, film soundtracks, and many recordings with the popular Mantovani orchestra, and with Manuel and his Music of the Mountains. His recording of the 'Adagio' from Joaquin Rodri-go's 'Concierto de Aranjuez' with Manuel sold over one million copies. His guitar quintet broadcast regularly in the late 1950's on the BBC's 'Guitar Club' series.
In the 1950's Ivor Mairants established his central school of dance music in London. All instruments were taught at this innovative establishment, but special emphasis was given to the guitar. Several of his ex-pupils are today Britain's top guitarists. In 1958, together with his wife Lily, he opened The Ivor Mairants Musicentre. This was Britain's first specialist guitar store and it was situated in the heart of London's West End. For many years some of the world's best guitars and guitar accessories were introduced into Britain by Ivor Mairants at his store. The Ivor Mairants Musicentre became a mecca for professional guitarists, and for amateur guitarists at all levels of ability.
Sadly, on Saturday 14th December the Musicentre storefront in Rathbone Place, London closed for business, and on 31st December 2019, the lease on our iconic Central London storefront ended.
We are pleased to be able to say however, that the Ivor Mairants Musicentre webstore lives on at www.ivormairants.co.uk