The album continues the‘stringed experiments’ of Di Matteo. Here, the artist presents compositions for bandoneon and string quintet, recorded with soloists from the symphonic orchestras in Montevideo.
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Escribo Para Los Angeles are Compositions by Luis di Matteo for Bandoneon and string quintet, recorded with soloists from the symphonic orchestras in Montevideo.
“La Casa de la Calle Minnesota” – The House on Minnesota Street
“I wrote this suite as an homage to the house in Montevideo where my wife, my children and I reside. The work consists of several mutually independent parts and is based on tango, milonga and candombe rhythms, which form the roots of my work as a composer. In this and several of my other compositions, however, measures in six-eighth and twelve-eighth time appear when called for by the underlying musical idea. None of my compositions follow an established style. If a work sounds like tango, for example, it is because tango is part of my background. My beginnings were in tango, milonga and candombe—then came music.
I call this and other compositions of mine suites only so as to give the child a name. Basically it is not my intention to write ‘classical’ music. I do not like the formalism and rules to which one has to subject oneself as a music student; I much prefer to compose freely. This is the only means by which human expression can evolve; otherwise one is composing for the musicologists. ‘La Casa de la Calle Minnesota‘ bears a certain similarity to earlier compositions such as ‘Del Nuevo Ciclo‘, ‘Sobre la Cumbre‘, ‘Imagen 32‘. But here I achieved a musicality and diversity of timbre never before attained in my work. ‘La Casa de la Calle Minnesota’ was composed in 1993 and is dedicated to my wife Quela, my son Leonardo and my daughter Katya.” Luis di Matteo
”Suite del Ultimo Bandoneonista” is the title track of Luis di Matteo latest CD production for bandoneon and string quintet (JARO 4198-2). Luis di Matteo of Montevideo is indeed one of the last great South American bandoneon virtuosi of his generation, and the one who has developed bandoneon music the furthest in the direction of classical music, especially chamber music. From the earliest works on, his oeuvre exhibits impressive independence, expressed in his compositions as well as in his performing style. Add the few great bandoneon players still performing in Buenos Aires and Montevideo to the four of international fame who appear on the concert stages of Europe, and the list really is a short one. This circumstance inspired the idea of writing a work to honor the last bandoneon player, the result of a constant and still-progressing Tango Agonie. The work begins with a sad movement in D minor, like a question mark against the background of a tango rhythm played by the left hand. The idea evolves in various tone patterns and timbres to a point of wistful beauty, the rhythm gradually heightening to the peak of the tango motif in bar 57 with a dramatic bandoneon passage supported by the strings. In bar 77 the bandoneon ushers in a candombe rhythm lasting eight measures; then the cello and double bass and finally the rest of the strings join in. The instrumentation becomes increasingly dense and compact, alternating with solo bandoneon passages unexpectedly breaking in twice.
Starting in bar 174 the strings play 38 measures alone; this short passage in three-quarter time lend the suite a truly classical colouration. In bar 213 the bandoneon, alone again, emits a threatening tango rhythm becoming all the more passionate when all of the strings participate. A short time later the joyful mood of the six-eighth returns, a meter in which the work attains some of its strongest instances of power and virtuosity. Later the bandoneon introduces a counterbeat, creating a lively rhythmical passage which leads into the milonga/candombe pattern of the final movement. The conclusion is melodious with a dense and colourful structure.
When one hears this suite the mind immediately is directed to the the great bandoneon players who appeared in the famous ”Orquestas Tipicas” of the 1940s. The ”Suite del Ultimo Bandoneonista” was written in Montevideo in 1991.
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