Mirecourt guitar (1827)
My luthier Bernhard Kresse bought this instrument at an auction
in Vichy, France, in 1995. Although the instrument was falling
into pieces, all the parts were in good condition and showed no
damage. It is a typical guitar of the late 1820's or the early
1830's, with its classical shape and design, which we know from
the guitar makers of Mirecourt, Paris. I asked Bernhard Kresse
to add a seventh string: this modification was quite usual in
the 1840's and 1850's, and recalls the music of Mertz and Coste.
LEGNANI (1790-1877) - Caprices, opus 20
Legnani wrote these miniatures inspired by the Caprices of Paganini.
The differences of key, color and thematic material give each
Caprice its own distinct character. The Romantic style of the
Italian bel canto is never far away.
SCHUBERT (1797-1828) – Aufenthalt
Schubert was above all the master of the Lied. He wrote his accompaniments
simply, supporting the character of the text, with little agitation
in the harmony or the rhythm. Thus he displayed his sympathy for
the guitar, an instrument which he himself played.
Kaspar MERTZ (1806-1856) - Harmonie du soir In 1986 Jim D'Addario
introduced me to Mario Maccaferri. This legendary guitarist then
played me several pieces by Mertz, a composer unknown to me. It
was a revelation. Mertz is the supreme romantic with his inevitable
vibrato, rubato and his demand for a personal artistic investment.
John Gilbert guitar (1980)
John Gilbert (1922), a former tool engineer at the computer industry,
became a completely self-taught guitar maker. Carrying out repairs
and building guitars as a hobby since 1965, encouragements from
players made him decide to become a full-time guitar maker in
1974. His experience in high-tech engineering gave Gilbert a special
attitude, focusing on measurement of dimensions, weight and stiffness.
The result was a reputation for consistency, both from one instrument
to another and from the lowest to the highest fret. John Gilbert’s
son William (Bill) joined him in 1991.
ASSAD - Farewell
‘Farewell’ was composed in 1993 for the score of the Japanese
film Natsu no Niwa (Summer Garden) by Shinji Soumai, and it is
dedicated to the memory of Sergio Assad's wife, who died after
the film's completion.
HENDERICKX - Saeta
A ‘Saeta’ is a devotional song genre, one of the Andalusian categories
of ‘Cante Hondo’ (deep song). The saeta has long been associated
with the Holy Week in Seville: it is sung along the extended route
of the all-night street procession in an atmosphere of fervour
and vitality, intermixed with deep reverence and joy.
Saeta contains 7 parts, inspired by Jesus’ Way of the Cross:
1. Christ condemned to death
2. The way of the cross of Jesus
3. Lamentation of Mary
4. The crucifixion of Jesus
5. His death on the cross
6. The resurrection of Jesus
Sebastian BACH - Chaconne, BWV 1002
The Chaconne is a polyphonic work written for the violin, a non
polyphonic instrument. However, Bach showed us how to adapt such
work to other instruments. I play this music straight from the
manuscript and I add the necessary harmonies – as Bach himself
used to do.