Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Egberto Gismonti's Saudações

Egberto Gismonti's new album Saudações has been released by ECM in Europe, and will be available in North America later this month.  It's a double album, with the orchestral suite Sertões Veredas - Tributo à Miscigenação on one disc, and a duo-guitar recital with his son Alexandre on the other.

I've only heard clips from the suite, but this article by João Marcos Coelho finds very strong influences of Villa-Lobos and Bach in this music for strings (played on the disc by the Havana-based Camerata Romeu, directed by Zenaida Romeu).  The other strong influence seems to be the Cuban writer Alejo Carpentier, who was a close friend of Villa-Lobos and someone with a great understanding of music.

According to Coelho, "A primeira audição de Sertões Veredas provoca a estranha sensação de estarmos diante de uma obra do Villa-Lobos inédita e recém-descoberta." - he has the strange sensation of hearing a a newly-discovered unknown score of Villa-Lobos.

I look forward to hearing the entire album, listening for the influences of Villa and Bach.  More importantly, though, it will be great to hear the first orchestral music from a composer for whom I have the greatest respect.

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