Monthly Archives: August 2014

Recuerdo soñado XX…memories of “Belleza de las Americas” concert for voice and guitar with Aeterna Musica

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Recuerdo soñado XX…memories of “Belleza de las Americas” concert for voice and guitar  with Aeterna Musica
 Recuerdo soñado XXDomingo 19 de mayo de 2013
Concierto extraordinario • La Belleza de las Américas
Anna Tonna (mezzosoprano) • Keith Rodríguez (guitarra)
Obras de Manuel Ponce, Heitor Villalobos, Agustín Barrios Mangoré, Ernesto Cordero, Frantz Casseus y canciones tradicionales de Estados Unidos.
Espacio Ronda
 
Recently my friend Francisco “Paco” Quirce who is one of the persons that leads Aeterna Musica posted this beautiful souvenir from a concert I did with them, with American guitarist (living in Marid) Keith Rodriguez.
 
Keith, who trained as a classical guitarist  with the Romeros in California, lives in Madrid with his family and is a high school music teacher and chorale director. He first reached out to me to start a collaboration to do a recital for a fundraising event to help the earthquake victims in Haiti in Madrid in 2010 for an organization called CESAL.  This link has a photo and sound clip of us performing a traditional colonial era song from the Americas,  “Wayfaring strange”:

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Belleza de las americas poster
 
Keith and I performed this gorgeous program a couple of times now.  Although I Iive in the States, when I go to Spain we continue to collaborate.  Since that first concert with CESAL, we were presented by Aeterna Musica, Museo de las Americas and as part of another fundraising event for the non profit charitable organization Centro Solidaridad.
 
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Aeterna Music is a non profit organization, and they do a  wonderful  and tireless labor; led by a group of musicians, aesthetes and university professors, they provide a space for musicians, poets and multi-disciplinary performers to perform.  They have a loyal concert going public, provide a beautiful program, and they both record and tape all the performances, which take in Espacio Ronda in Madrid.  They can be followed on their Aeterna Musica Facebook Page.
 
I have beautiful memories of this afternoon, performing songs for voice and guitar by composers of Puerto Rico, Mexico, Brazil, Paraguay, Haiti, and the United States.  This concert was the European premiere of the guitar/voice version of the Seis canciones arcaicas by the Mexican composer Manuel Ponce, arranged by American guitarist Gregg Nestor.  This wonderful cycle are masterpieces in my opinion, and I have performed them in the piano/voice version. The guitar/voice version has been recorded the soprano Anna Bartos and Mr. Nestor, and is available on Amazon and iTunes.
 
I am especially fond of the Haitian composer Frantz Casseus, he has beautiful solo guitar music that can be heard on youtube.  The song I sang “Girl from the woods” is beautifully interpreted by the soprano Rachel Flynn and is on youtube as well. Its a haunting melody, and a well known folk tune in Haiti, which has been artfully arranged by Casseus.
 
 
 
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Keith and myself at Espacio Ronda

 

(In Spanish)

Notas de programa

Abarcando los campos de la música popular, folclórica y clásica, Manuel Ponce compuso Seis poemas arcaicos en 1939 originalmente para voz y piano, utilizando el codex madrileño de los Reyes Católicos, el celebrado “Cancionero de Palacio”. Esta tarde este cíclo debuta en Europa en transcripción para voz y guitarra, elaborada por el guitarrista estadounidense Gregg Nestor. Continuando con la representacion en Norte America el programa incluye canciones tradicionales de la época colonial de los Estados Unidos y de la tradición afro-americana esclavo del celebrado género denominado spiritual.

Escucharemos la pieza modinha, termino para una canción sentimental, usualmente contando una historia de amor en los siglos XIX procedente de Brazil y Portugal; el Mstro. Villa- Lobos arregló esta simple melodia en el 1926, durante sus años parisinos.

El compositor Puertoriqueno Ernesto Cordero, titulado en el Real Conservatorio Superior de Madrid, exhibe en sus canciones un nationalismo nostálgico e intrañable; ambos Madrugada y La hija del viejo Pancho llevan letra del poeta folclórico Llorens Torrens, ambas canciones que exaltan la vida de pueblo. Cadencia se acerca a la canción “canta autor”, sumamente personal, pero con aires en el preludio de romanza medieval española. La breve composición titulado Zenobia, elaborado sobre un poema de Juan Ramón Jimenez, lleva el titulo de la esposa del poeta, aunque el poema originalmente lleva el titulo de “Para quererte, al destino” procedente del libro de poemas “Estío” (1915), y lleva una dedicación a la soprano Victoria de los Angeles.

Para solo guitarra el concierto incluye piezas por el consagrado Maestro Barrios Mangoré de Paraguay, autor de piezas consideradas obras maestras por los grandes guitaristas del mundo. La catedral, inspirado en momentos en J.S. Bach es considerado el magnum opus del autor.

Incluimos el poco conocido compositor haitiano Franz Casséus, un autor que aspiraba a las metas estéticas de Villa- Lobos, emplea material folclórico para elevar la música de su pais. Las dos canciones incluidas en este programa fueron progamados en un concierto benéfico que se llevo a cabo en el 2012 a cargo de CESAL para Haití despues del terremoto por nuestros dos artistas.

 
 
Belleza de las Americas Anna Tonna, mezzo soprano Keith Rodriguez, guitarra
 
Seis poemas arcaicos por Manuel Ponce México
transcipción para voz y guitarra por Gregg Nestor (1883-1948)Más quiero morir (Juan de Encina)
Zagaleja del Casar (Autor anónimo)
De las sierras (Pedro Juan Aldomar)
Sol, sol, gi, gi (Alonso de Plaja)
Desciende el valle (Autor anónimo)
Tres morillas (Diego Fernandez y autor anónimo)
 
 
Three American Folksongs Tradicional Estados Unidos
transcripción para canto y guitarra por Carlos Barbosa-Lima
Wayfaring Stranger
Nightingale
Red Rosey Bush Modinha por  Heitor Villa-Lobos Brazil
(1887-1959)

 

La Catedral por Agustín por Barrios Mangoré Paraguay (1885-1944)
Preludio
Andante Religioso
Allegro
Keith Rodriguez

 Madrugada  de Ernesto Cordero Puerto Rico (n. 1946)
Cadencia
Zenobia
La Hija del viejo Pancho
Haitianesques por Frantz Casséus Haití
No. 1 Cé grand matin (1915-1993)
No. 2 Fi’ nan bois

 Una limosna por el amor de Dios Agustín Barrios Mangoré
Keith Rodriguez

De Five Spirituals Tradicional Estados Unidos
transcripción para voz y guitarra por Rodney Stucky
Give me Jesus
Deep River
Little David Play On Your Harp

New Rochelle Opera presents Operatic Heart-Stoppers

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My next concert, Operatic Heart Stoppers with New Rochelle Opera on September 14, 2014 at 3 PM in New Rochelle, NY.

New Rochelle Local (BETA)

New Rochelle Opera offers OPERATIC HEART STOPPERS on Sunday, September 14, 2014 in the Christopher Murphy Auditorium at Iona College, 715 North Avenue, New Rochelle, NY.

http://ift.tt/1Bau0vK

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“Spanish Passion”: Chamber music and song by composers of the Spanish Silver Age

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“Spanish Passion”: Chamber music and song by composers of the Spanish Silver Age

“SPANISH PASSION”

An evening of chamber music and song

Music by Manuel de Falla, Joaquín Rodrigo, Joaquín Turina, Isaac Albéniz and

María Rodrigo

August 21, 2014 at 6 PM

“Classical at The Cornelia Cafe”

29 Cornelia Street in the West Village (NYC)

$10 cover charge, $10 drink minimum

For more information:

http://corneliastreetcafe.com/downstairs/list2010c.asp?sdate=8/20/2014

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Anna Tonna, Olga Vinokur, Eva León and Anna de la Paz at Brooklyn Pier (NY)

What started out as a casual meeting over coffee in the Upper West Side (NY) this past June to talk of  a possible chamber music and song project had an unexpected first showing this past August 8th at Bargemusic at the  Brooklyn Pier.  Russian pianist Olga Vinokur, a regular at Bargemusic proposed the idea of “Spanish Passion” at the Barge, and we premiered our musical experiment comprised of music for piano and violin, songs for voice and piano and a special guest,  Spanish dancer/castanet artist Anna de la Paz.  Spanish born violinist Eva León joined us in this adventure with a beautiful and virtuosic sonata by Joaquín Rodrigo (1901-1999); she is currently under contract with Naxos to record the complete opus for piano and violin for both Joaquín Rodrigo and Catalan composer Xavier Montsalvatge.

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Spanish born violinist Eva León is a Brooklyn resident http://www.evaleon.com

The program at Bargemusic on August 4, 2014 gathered a group of composers who are emblematic to late 19th century and early to mid 20th century Spanish repertoire. These composers, with the exception of Joaquín Rodrigo are part of the period known as the “Silver Age” of Spanish culture, which had its first flowering in the 1850’s Madrid, bringing forth in the course of time several Noble Prize poets; philosophers and painters of world acclaim, and culminating in the brilliant works of the younger generation with Federico García Lorca, Salvador Dalí and Luis Buñuel, to just name the more well known figures. Tonight’s program pre-dates this first modern wave, and mostly showcases the figures of the earlier generations of this so called Spanish Silver Age.

 If you didn’t get a chance to hear us at the Barge, we repeat the concert at the Cornelia Café in the West Village on August 21, 6 PM.  Spanish dance artist Anna de la Paz will not be with us on that evening, but we will perform the rest of the program as follows:

PROGRAM

Ayes…three songs for voice and piano by Maria Rodrígo

Dos canciones de Maria Lejarrága by Manuel De Falla

Saeta by Joaquín Turina

Sonata for piano and violin by Joaquín Rodrigo

The songs Caterpillar and Il en n’est de l’amour by Isaac Albéniz

Asturias and Tango by Isaac Albéniz

Suite populaire espagnole by Manuel de Falla

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Playwright Maria Lejárraga (1874-1974)

The program begins with a set of songs inspired in southern Spain by the female composer María Rodrigo, followed by a relatively unknown song cycle born out of the friendship between Falla and the playwright Maria Lejárraga (Martínez-Sierra). Lejárraga and Falla collaborated in what are considered the pillars of Spanish 20th century ballet works: El amor brujo and The Three Cornered Hat. Lejarrága, author as well of the texts used by María Rodrigo, was a close collaborator to the well known composers of the Silver Age. 

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Composer María Rodrigo (1888-1967)

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Me at the Bargemusic, singing the “Ayes…” with pianist Olga Vinokur by María Rodrigo

Saeta by Joaquín Turina uses a text by the Quintero Brothers, and is inspired in the spontaneous prayers that are sung in cante jondo style from balconies during Seville’s Holy Week procession.

Joaquín Rodrigo of Concierto de Aranjuez fame is author of works of all genres, and his Sonata is his most important opus for violin and piano. Full of contrast, delightful melodies and energy, it is was dedicated to the memory of his friend, the composer Joaquín Turina.

Olga Vinokur

Olga Vinokur at Bargemusic

In addition to Isaac Albeniz’s well known piano pieces from his suite España, of which two are included tonight arranged for violin and piano, we add two salón songs by Albéniz: one upon the text of his protector and patron F. B. Money Coutts, and the second a song that clearly drinks from the fountains of late French romantic music, Il est ne de l’amour, dedicated to Madame Ernest Chausson.

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Spanish composer Isaac Albéniz (1860-1909)

In the concert at Bargemusic on August 4, we included a piece by Tomás Bretón is a late 19th century Spanish composer known for his contributions to Spanish theatrical music known as zarzuela. We showcased a movement from his piano suite and orchestral work Escenas andaluzas with the sounds of castanets. The super imposition of the castanets on instrumental music by such Spanish dance artists as Antonia Mercé “La Argentina” (1890-1936) were common collaborations during this time period, were dance artists, composers, painters and playwrights created works for the Spanish theater in early 20th century Spain.

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Spanish dance artist Anna de la Paz with Olga Vinokur at Bargemusic, August 2014

The program ends with an excerpt of Falla’s emblematic Siete Canciones Populares Españolas, or as they are known when they are played by violin or cello Suite Populaire Espagnole composed by Falla under the influence of the ideas of the musicologist Louis Lucas and his ideas regarding harmonies, modality and folk song. The songs are part of Falla’s Paris period, in which he enjoyed the friendship among many others of Claude Debussy and Igor Stravinsky. We did our own arrangement for voice, piano and violin.  The castanets of Anna de la Paz joined me in the first song of the set “Paño Moruno”.

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Olga Vinokur, Anna de la Paz and Anna Tonna performing El pano moruno by Falla

 Premiered in 1914 and soon after part of the repertoire of well known opera divas of the day, this cycle continues to be considered a masterpiece of early 20th century song and chamber music repertoire.

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The artists of “Spanish Passion” after the concert at Bargemusic, at Brooklyn Pier with the NYC Skyline

June and July travels in Spain with “España alla Rossini”

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June and July travels in Spain with “España alla Rossini”

Dear friends, enclosed is a link to a blog article by HiSTéRiCaS Grabaciones of the concert España alla Rossini. The  discographic project produced by The Recording Consort and distributed by iTinerant Classics had its debut as a live concert this summer at Gamma Heart Festival, The Museo de Romanticismo de Madrid, and in its complete form at the Festival de Segovia in Spain on July 21, 2014 at the Patio de Armas in the Alcazar of Segovia.  

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The concert is for pianist, mezzo soprano, Spanish dance artist with a historic piano, Broadwood & Sons (circa 1831).  The costumed concert repertoire is comprised of songs and duets by Gioacchino Rossini that relatex his love for the musical culture of Spain as well as his relationships with royalty and personalities of the day such as Queens Maria Cristina and Isabel ii, as well as the Duchess of Alba and Berwick and his patron Francisco Aguado.

Anna Tonna, mezzo soprano

Emilio González Sanz, piano

Cristina Gómez Tornamira, dancer

Miguel Borrallo, tenor

Article and photos of España alla Rossini at the Festival de Segovia:

España alla Rossini at the Festival de Segovia on july 21, 2014. article and photos

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