Archive for the Ainhoa Arteta category

A summer with lots of music, by Javier Pérez Senz

Posted by Javier Pérez Senz on June 28, 2011  |  Leave a comment

Catalunya still boasts a wide offer of summer festivals. It’s true that there is not always a clear programming policy, and all too often the proposals consist of presenting several concerts without a common theme or clear artistic focus, but the offer still stands, despite the crisis.

In the case of Barcelona, the situation is rather depressing. In fact, it is a city where classical music almost disappears in the summer. Only the Gran Teatre del Liceu offers a quality programme during July: the end of the season includes concerts of Tamerlane by Handel, with Plácido Domingo and Bejun Mehta in the cast, and Daphne, by Richard Strauss, with Pablo González making his debut at the Liceu at the helm of the OBC.

The Festival Grec has increased its classical offer, traditionally rather scarce, under the artistic direction of Ricardo Szwarcer, and forthcoming events include an opera concert with Ainhoa Arteta and the Cadaqués Orchestra under the baton of Jaime Martin, with Puccini featuring prominently in the programme.

Incidentally, the great Basque soprano has just released an extraordinary recital with the pianist Malcolm Martineau, which is her debut with the prestigious Deutsche Grammophon label. The repertoire includes pieces by Charles Gounod, Georges Bizet, Reynaldo Hahn and an exciting section devoted to the great Spanish song repertoire including the Cinco canciones negras by Xavier Montsalvatge, four Tonadillas al estilo antiguo, by Enric Granados and the Poema en forma de canciones, op. 19, by Joaquín Turina.

Fortunately, despite the crisis, many summer festivals remain active, but the compulsive search for new audiences and the blind obsession with eclecticism as a programming formula has swept away many of the hallmarks of some of the most traditional venues.

The same cannot be said of the classical offer at the Auditori – reduced to its minimum expression, although this year the Sónar has included a magnificent homage to Steve Reich – or the Palau de la Música Catalana, with an offer exclusively intended to attract tourists.

Fortunately, despite the crisis, many summer festivals remain active, but the compulsive search for new audiences and the blind obsession with eclecticism as a programming formula has swept away many of the hallmarks of some of the most traditional venues. Where once classical music reigned supreme – because most festivals around Catalonia began as festivals specializing in classical music – world music, jazz, pop and other genres now share the limelight.

The trend is not necessarily bad, but caution is needed and the occasional mega concert in search of mass audiences is not to be entirely trusted. One thing is to harness the pull of the media stars so as to be able to display the sold-out sign, something legitimate and commendable, and another thing is to overlook the rest, the promotion of new values and local productions as a sign of identity. In this sense, we can applaud the consistency, rigour and unquestionable quality of the Torroella de Montgrí International Festival of Music and also celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Festival Castell de Peralada, which this year returns to its origins with a sensational programme focused on opera.

This summer also counts on two new events, conceived with the idea of supporting very distinct artistic proposals. On the one hand, the Festival de Música Antiga dels Pirineus has been launched with plenty of momentum, fruit of the joint efforts of different institutions in the Pyrenees. Its programming policy is clear and attractive: drawing on the beauty of the rich architectural heritage in the area and its suitability as a backdrop for early music, in order to offer evenings with musical personality, presented by the best bands and singers specialised in the historical performance of the early and baroque repertoire . And, importantly, the idea is to make it a key event for both the international promotion of the best Catalan ensembles and soloists and the dissemination of our musical heritage.

The second proposal also combines architectural beauty with music and includes gastronomy as a novel incentive. This is the Modernist soirees in the unique setting of the Monestir de San Benet, a proposal that offers visitors the chance to enjoy a concert of “Modernist” music in the monastery cellars and, optionally, during the same evening visit the “Modernist” space dedicated to Ramon Casas at Món Sant Benet and enjoy supper in the gardens.

Gianandrea Noseda conducts Albéniz and Granados

Posted by Leticia Martin on April 24, 2009  |  Leave a comment

The recent tour of the Orquesta de Cadaqués, conducted by Gianandrea Noseda, with concerts in Girona (28 April) and Zaragoza (29 Abril) focussed on Spanish music. The repertoire consisted of pieces by Isaac Albéniz, to mark the centenary of his death, and Enrique Granados, and their works were interpreted using the orchestrations that Albert Guinovart was commissioned to write by Tritó Edicions.

The Orquesta de Cadaqués presented four pieces from the Suite Española (Cadiz, Asturias, Cordoba and Sevilla) by Albéniz as well as his Canciones Italianas, interpreted by Ainhoa Arteta. Las Tonadillas by Enrique Granados completed a first part in which the Orquesta de Cadaqués, Gianandrea Noseda and Ainhoa Arteta paid their own special homage to Spanish music.

The concert programme was completed by F. Schubert’s Symphony nº 4.

Release of Herminie by Arriaga

Posted by Redacción on February 19, 2008  |  Leave a comment

Herminie, cantata by the composer Juan Crisóstomo Arriaga, is the latest release from the Tritó score division. The work, composed in 1825, when the composer was 19 years old, has been revised by Jorge Sancho and this is the first time it has been done in an urtext edition, intended to reproduce the original intention of the composer as exactly as possible, without any added or changed material. The text of the cantata is taken from “Gerusalemme Liberata” by Tasso in the French version by J. A. Vinaty (1790 1830). In the arias and especially in the recitatives we find moments of great dramatic intensity, revealing a composer who employed skilfully the expressive resources of romantic drama, while the orchestra, despite the lack of trumpets or kettledrums, underscores and highlights effectively the expressivity of the singing, which demands a soprano who has both an aptitude for coloratura and great power. This work forms part of the obligatory repertoire for the 9th Cadaqués Orchestra International Conducting Competitionand is available on CD with the soprano Ainhoa Arteta and The Cadaqués Orchestra conducted by Neville Marriner.

Ainhoa Arteta and Sir Neville Marriner perform Arriaga

Posted by Redacción on January 28, 2008  |  2 Comments

The figure of Juan Crisóstomo Arriaga (1806-1826) has gained renewed recognition in recent years thanks to the celebration of the bicentennial of his birth. This new recording from Tritó catalogue, provides a view of different stages of his brief but very prolific and interesting career as a composer, including pieces never before recorded. Among them we find Arriaga’s first and last symphonic works, both in the characteristic overture form of the period: Overture in F major, “Nonetto”, op. 1 and Overture in D major, op. 20. The CD also includes one of the best known works by Arriaga, Symphony in D minor, composed when he was fourteen years old and already residing in Paris, and a piece that did much to establish the composer’s reputation.

Rounding out the CD is Herminie Cantata for soprano and orchestra, which despite the title is a one-person dramatic scene, with lyrics taken from Tasso’s Gerusalemme Liberata. The enthralling Ainhoa Arteta provides the voice.

The union of two great names in classical music – the conductor Sir Neville Marriner and Ainhoa Arteta, one of the most celebrated sopranos of our day – with the Cadaqués Orchestra, recorded live at the Kursaal Auditorium in San Sebastián during the 2006 Quincena Musical Donostiarra, make this CD essential listening for anyone interested in (discovering) Arriaga.

Cadaqués Orchestra Tour

Posted by Marcel Soleda on December 1, 2003  |  Leave a comment

The Cadaqués Orchestra will be going on tour in January 2004. Under the baton of Sir Neville Marriner, the Orchestra will perform in several Spanish cities, including Zaragoza and Pamplona.

The featured soloist on this occasion will be the soprano Ainhoa Arteta, in addition to the Orchestra’s habitual soloists. The tour comprises two programmes, centring on the works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

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