sabato 22 settembre 2012

Review of Guitar Chamber Works Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco by Arturo Tallini, MusikStrasse, 2008


Italian Translation

Among the composers who most linked their image to the music for guitar we may certainly recalled Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco. Born in Florence in 1895, he showed since he was young a remarkable musical talent, becoming in the thirties one of the best known and appreciated Italian composers, whose works were performed by musicians like of Toscanini, Piatigorsky, Casella, Heifetz, Gieseking and Segovia, it was the friendship with the last one to create in him a love for the guitar, an instrument which, in recent years, he wrote the most intimate and autobiographical music of his career. Career that he was forced to continue in the United States where he moved in 1939 because of racial laws promulgated by the Fascist regime.
This CD gives us the opportunity to enjoy a broad spectrum of his music, focusing our attention on his compositions for chamber music. It begins with the Quintetto op.143, composed in 1950 and dedicated to Andres Segovia, performed here with the Solisti di Roma. It’s a melodic and serene music, in four movements, partly neoclassical and partly neoromantic, whit evident influences from Spain.
Then we have Romancero Gitano, recorded with the Ensamble Vocalese perfect example of an inedited combination of choir and guitar. Born at the request of guitarist Siegfried Behrendnel in 1951, this music offers to Arturo Tallini the possibility to create with his guitar a sound carpet for the beautiful verses of Lorca (who, despite of the title, are not got from the collection Poema del Cante jondo of 1921/1925), harmonically and rhythmically coloring the seven songs. These are seven beautiful songs and I would point out to the gentle beauty of "Memento."
In combination with the piano we find the Fantasia op. 145, always dedicated to Segovia and his wife Paquita Madriguera, here performed with Tiziana Piermattei. Nice music with impressionist and Spanish colors, which is characterized by the significant balance achieved between two instruments seemingly antithetical to each other by their own nature. For guitar and flute are the three movements of Sonatina op.205, composed in 1965 for the duo formed by flutist Werner Tripp and guitarist Konrad Ragossnig, one of the most popular works of his repertoire, where we can find the most lyrical aspects of the composer. This work is not so easy to play due to the virtuosistic skills required to the performers, here is performed with great melodic spontaneity showing an irresistible charm. Last but not least the Ecloghe op. 206, played with Carlo Morena on flute and Francesco Manfrin on English horn. Designed for a rather unusual ensemble the four Ecloghe are characterized by a happy timbre intuition which every instrument integrates itself perfectly into the overall musical discourse. The trio managed with considerable grace and finesse to show the sense of nostalgia felt by the composer for Italy, feeling expressed with the evocation of dance music and melodies of italian traditional musical culture.
Definitely a great disc that will make you spend happy moments and poignant melancholy.

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