Armenian News Network / Groong


Armenian News Network / Groong
November 25, 2012
Enterrtainment Wire

By Sahan Arzruni

Joel Sachs, the indefatigable champion of contemporary music,
presented a concert on November 9, 2012, at New York's Lincoln Center
showcasing Music of Latin America. The performance was part of
Carnegie Hall's Voices from Latin America festival and featured the
New Juilliard Ensemble.

Sergio Kafejian, one of the six composers highlighted, was born in Sao
Paulo, Brazil, to Armenian parents. His Sabre Paranambucae, composed
in 2010 for chamber ensemble received its U.S. premiere at Alice Tully
Hall. Consisting of two sections, the composition gives voice to a
primeval approach to music: its bold dissonances providing a backdrop
of nature sounds and Brazilian folk music with recorded bits of `frog
lagoons, typical Brazilian music brass ensemble rehearsals, crickets
on a lagoon border,' and the sound of rabeca (a kind of Brazilian
fiddle) peppering the performance. The striking brief work would be
well described as a deconstruction of musique concrete.

The program also included works by Cuban composer and conductor Guido
Lopez-Gavilan. The rather diffused Sonotropic presented `a changing
variety of expressive contrasts and a grand rhythmic richness,'
according to the composer's liner notes.  Mexican Hilda Paredes's
Demente Cuerdo, for solo harp, was described as `a journey of
discoveries, which led me to make choices for the instruments used in
this piece.' As with Sonotropic, this first audition of Demente Cuerdo
lacked cogency for me, but I was impressed by the suave harp soloist,
Caroline Bembia.

Argentine composer Alejandro Iglesias Rossi's Ritual concluded the
first half of the program. Soprano Lara Second-Haid deftly handled its
otherworldly vocal line. The middle section of Ritual - based on the
music of the indigenous Incas, and full of verve, aplomb, and
assurance - was simply exhilarating. The concert ended with works by
Hebert Vazquez and Paul Desenne. Mr. Vazques's work was perhaps the
most successful of the evening, unfolding like a balletic score. Paul
Desenne, the best-known Venezuelan composer in the U.S., was presented
through his well-crafted Sinfonia.

As founder and director of New Juilliard Ensemble, Joel Sachs has done
another invaluable service to the city, introducing new music to New
Yorkers and offering young composers a golden opportunity in this
cultural capital of the world.

Master pianist Sahan Arzruni enjoys an international career, and is
also known as a composer, ethnomusicologist, producer, teacher,
lecturer, writer, recording artist and broadcasting personality.
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