Wednesday, July 1, 2009

George Rochberg & Villa-Lobos

In his book Five Lines, Four Spaces: The World of My Music, George Rochberg writes about his 1991 work Muse of Fire for flute and guitar:
There is one long, continuous tune in which both join in the traditional pattern of flute carrying the ecstatic melodic release and guitar accompanying with running arpeggiated harmonic figures progressing through tonal motions that verge on a kind of 'south of the border' pop tune. (Inspired perhaps by distant associations with Villa-Lobos's Brasileiras, of which I was once very fond?)
Rochberg wrote this work for guitarist Eliot Fisk and flautist Paulo Robison. Later, Fisk
...had played some solo guitar pieces of Villa-Lobos whose 'impassioned romanticism' gave me the direct impetus to set about writing the Bouquet. (p. 182)
It's interesting that Villa's music had this particular resonance in Rochberg's music. I look forward to hearing these works. The disc Eden: Out of Time includes Muse of Fire played by Fisk and Robison, as well as Fisk's American Bouquet, Tin Pan Alley melodies for solo guitar.

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