Improvisation on La Folia
I've been introduced to baroque music with this particular theme, more precisely the variations composed by Marin Marais, when I was around 10 years old. From there I've first listen to most of the Marin Marais work and then extended it to a lot of other baroque composers, then other periods of classical music and other composers, and so on. The first time I've listened to the Jordi Savall interpretation it was like the first time you make love. You don't really understand everything of what's going on, you certainly not appreciate it at its right value and you don't even know that it could be better but what you're sure about is that it is amazing.
In fact this piece is also the first time I've written orchestral music. Around 14 years old with a really bad midi based software, inputting the notes without any theoretical knowledge excepted what I was learing on my classical guitar.
This piece was also responsible for my acceptance at the music academy. Due to my lack of theoretical background they were pretty sceptic about me. Then they asked if I was composing and I played them one of the guitar variation I've written some weeks ago. This was pretty basic, but they trusted me based on the result I get at composing without any theorical knowledge. It was a kind of jazzy version with lot of 7th chords added etc. Then some months later, the big drama, no more little finger at the left hand. The show is over.
I totally stopped music for some years, but decided to get over that stupid little finger by focusing only on composing some weeks ago. But I've never stopped to listen to and read about music. Even theoretically or historically. I also falled deeply in love with J.S. Bach and Chopin.
What's really funny it's that, in the end, I've never analyzed or even read any folia score. But I'm sure I can sing the 18 minutes of the Marin Marais variation by heart. And, opposed to many other piece, I think I don't want to analyze it. A bit like staying "ignorant". I just appreciate the experience without trying to understanding it.
So as this piece is really something for me, I think this mass will grow over time, in fact I've already changed some few things and started to write another variation.
Messe pour chorale sur le thème de "La Folia"
"Folías de España is an old and new work, full of vigour and virtuosity. Izarra uses the Marin Marais version of the Folia theme and confronts it with an introduction of her own creation. The variations are full of rhythmic displacements, shifting odd meters and harmonic tension based on the use of semitones and Venezuelan rhythms. This confrontation produces an inner tension between the highly virtuosic and expressive variations, embedding baroque elements reflecting the originsof the theme.
The texture of the work is generally monodic, with changes in register that create dynamics and contrasts.
After taking us through several recreations of the theme of the Folia it is only at the end we hear the original form of the theme by Marais, which imposes itself over the use of semitones, which characterizes the work from its introduction."
Particularly memorable is the relatively brief Luvina, in which Toro creates a particularly spooky sounscape...the delicate imagery of the former ('Desde una ventanta con Loros' for solo guitar) and the virtuosity of Folías de España provide ample rewards to those who allow them a second innings. A significant contemporary release.
Duration: 2'06", 493 kB.( 24kB/s, 11KHz)
Impressive set of Variations on a familiar theme...The work as a whole is a demanding schedule both technically and musically, but there is nothing here which can´t be made to work well. A demanding yet by no means unapproachable work by a time served composer with a natural feel for the guitar.
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