Learning with Legends: a session with Pepe Romero
Pepe Romero talks about the Concierto de Aranjuez, The Universe, and Everything!
From the youtube channel of the “Guitar Foundation of America” a useful video in which Pepe Romero talks about the “Concierto de Aranjuez”, by Joaquín Rodrigo.
An abstract of his biography taken from DeutscheGrammophon.com:
One of the most celebrated and versatile musicians of his generation on any instrument, the Spanish-born guitarist Pepe Romero has enjoyed a varied and illustrious career. Together with his father, the legendary Celedonio Romero, and his brothers Celin and Ángel, Pepe established the Romeros Quartet — the “Royal Family of the Guitar” — as the leading guitar ensemble in the world. Known for classical performances of dazzling virtuosity, compelling interpretations, and flawless technique, Pepe is also a passionate advocate of the traditional flamenco of his native Andalusia. He has appeared as featured soloist with the world’s greatest orchestras and ensembles, in collaboration with the most celebrated conductors and composers.
The Concierto de Aranjuez
This concerto is in three movements, Allegro con spirito, Adagio and Allegro gentile.
The first and last movements are in D major, while the famous middle movement is in B minor.
First movement: Allegro con spirito
The opening movement is based on traditional dances such as the fandango.
The guitar enters with a strummed passage, joined by agile counterpoint from the woodwinds that never overpowers the soloist.
Second movement: Adagio
The guitar strums quietly while the English horn plays a plaintive melody inspired by the saeta, an Andalusian lament sung during Holy Week: the guitar and English horn pass the theme back and forth, and finally the entire orchestra takes it up.
Third movement: Allegro gentile
The last movement is a clever combination of Baroque-sounding counterpoint and dancing, folk-like melodies.
Various solo instruments and groups pass the final theme back and forth, and after a final grand presentation, the movement and work end delicately.