“The violin and the metropolis” is the fruit of Italian violinist Simona Cavuoto’s intense work: an artist of solid technique and versatile musicality, she has passionately dedicated herself to the ways and techniques of contemporary classical music. Six out of the eight present compositions were especially written for the project and all of them developed with the composers, thus stimulating an environment that draws performer and composer together. Coming from the historical arch of the violin’s tradition, the compositions establish a dialogue with the contemporary urban society in its particular features and idiosyncrasies: throughout this challenge, either they slide into the origins of the instrument or look forward to new sounds, forms and harmonic relations, where the violin, whose timbre is so familiar to us, reaches new and unusual grounds in our musical perception. On the one hand there is the metropolis as a symbol of the society in the XXI century and, on the other, the violin with its memory of more than four centuries of history, both disclosing themselves in the varied gestures, affections and colours reached in the compositions collected here.
Considering the vigorous Brazilian musical scene in the XXI century for the violin, this project proposes a unique view into a repertoire that was developed through a careful and elaborated treatment of the musical language.
This project had the support of the Programa de Ação Cultural (ProAc) of the Secretaria de Cultura do Estado de São Paulo.
O violino na metrópole
CD from the italian violinist Simona Cavuoto, with the support of: Programa de Ação Cultural (PROAC) 2011
Launched by ÁguaForte editions specialized in special projects, the album brings together new compositions for solo violin, many of them written especially for the occasion. With elaborate art, the publication also includes texts on the works and on the composers.
ABOUT THE WORKS
3 Capricci Urbani
It is an open work that aims to portray two sound concepts apart: on one side the violin sound spectrum arising from the seventeenth to nineteenth centuries, intend a wealth of new sounds, textures and articulations arising from the natural physical structure of the instrument. The choice of the name "Capricci" is directly inspired by Paganini, however, we seek here a concept of virtuosity that touches on criteria such as clarity, technical accuracy and especially the materialization of new motor strategies to develop the violinist in order to get dubious and complex sounds. The word "Urbani" relates to the poetics of the big city, so devastated in their natural geological scale, established new paradigms about the lyrical and beautiful. Thus, intending to extract sounds that are apparently weak and unsuitable for a traditional musical discourse..
In ten vignettes, two weeks of the intimacy of a lonely person, the sole master of a deserted nation, declaimed by a lonely instrument: some readings by Mário de Andrade, cryptic messages drifting afloat on the proverbial sea, a stroll in the park, and three failed trials of self-portraiting at the shadow of an angel-like figure. As a motto, Mayakovski:
I lifted it like a halterofilist,
and hauled it like an acrobat.
Then I yelled:
"Behold! Here it is! It's yours!"
The ladies all left the premises
"It would be better were it smaller;
a tango shall we dance, instead?"
unbearable is the burden - but I do bear it.
I'd like it off my shoulders - but I know
off my shoulders it shall not be!
My ribs can't possibly sustain such weight.
The prison of my chest crackles with the strain.
Vladimir Mayakovski (1893-1930)
Arya per Yara
I was listening to Rimsky's Sheherazade and an idea dawned on me : I foresaw a clear movement descending from the treble of the violin going down gradually, reaching low G string; a thorough, flowery arpeggio from top to bottom, From each note in the arpeggio there blossoms a “ fioritura”, a sort of bouquet. The arpeggio, at each new statement, some of its flowers wither, petals fall down until it becomes a naked branch. I would be pleased if the piece sounded like that. But the actual piece (recorded in this CD) is shuffled up. The third apparition of the branch- arpeggio is in its full blossom. The first and the second appearances are different aspects of its loss of flowers and petals. The very last( and fourth repetition) corresponds to the naked, bare, flowerless branch.
Paulistinhas are small religious sculptures in clay or wood, made from Portuguese examples – they are typical of the production of sacred images in the state of São Paulo (Brazil) in the 18th and 19th centuries. I imagined a Paulistinha in which the violin told of the sculptor’s work. In a first stage, the opening piece (the raw wood being struck by the tools), in which the wished image is slowly outlined. In a second stage, the second movement, in which the image is made clear, polished, painted. In order to shape my sculpture, I have used as a model an old church song written down by Mário de Andrade, derived from a Portuguese melody (in my “figure” the song is transfigured into the image I have imagined)..
Two chords, an almost "rasgueado" guitar, bow strokes, lines and an almost mute voice, are some of the materials that compose the narrative Recitare. We do not have here the word as a such expressive character, typical of the barroque period, but the sound itself is framed in ways that take center stage, driving the sound to that sort of declamation. For this, the interpreter is required great flexibility, because the time course of the piece suffers continuous changes of moments of extremely rhythmic life, harsher sounds and other more static moments where the voice to “Bocca Chiusa” always reveals a more subtle and lyrical territory. Recitare is especially dedicated to the violinist Simona Cavuoto, who gave me this job with her dedicated and engaging interpretation.
¡Oh! este viejo y roto violín!
I transcribe below Leon Felipe's poem “Con el violin roto”, so that it may work as an introduction to my piece. I wanted it to say distorted things, easily distinguishable: it may groan, it may moan, it may rage---foam. But this time, the violin would not sing.
With the broken violin.
Alas! How unpleasant sounds this violin!
Leon Felipe, you' ve got to buy another violin...
--- it is time! At eighty years of age!
It is worthless, with this very broken violin
I will play for myself
in a few days “Las golondrinas”
this song so beautiful
that the mexicans sing always
for those going away in a trip
how does it begin?
Adiós! Adiós ( good bye, good bye)
Godamn !how rough I am!
In reality this violin sounds rather unpleasant...
But with very violin I've got to play however a cluster of songs
That have been forgotten in my complete works
I do not want that they get lost
Among the noise of my unusable sheets
Perhaps you may not enjoy it
But I have nothing else left...
Not even another violin...
I cannot anyhow get away without playing them
Exactly on this old and broken violin.
It is a metalinguistic work that is based on three important composers of the Baroque Period, Bach, Vivaldi and Tartini. This work seeks to establish a musical discourse that dialogues sometimes directly and indirectly with the gesture of affection of these composers. "Lines of Eisenach," intend a polyphonic discourse that comes from a line (melody) and here we find fragments of a Bachian treatment. "Pirano", is aimed directly to Tartini; all his lyrical violin collides with a unique concept in its time. "Venezia", portrays the lyrical and textural dimension of Vivaldi, a profusion of intense gestures and emotions. In "Memórias" we find fragments of the three previous parts and other memories of violin gestures present in the periods that followed the Baroque to the XX century, all very "hidden" to the most prepared listeners.
When my father died, years ago, I wrote a little “tombeau” for him using as basic material a song which he would constantly sing throughout his life: Nature Boy.
Touched by the death of Henri Pousseur, I turned back to that song. But now as a sort of refrain that accomodates voices heard through the most distant winds. Couplets which sing of his farewell.
The refrain, in its first appearance, is almost abstract but, little by little, troughout the piece, the song is stated in full. I used the violin because I owed a violin piece to Simona Cavuoto and also because the violin sings in its best when it is alone. “ It's very strange to approach Mozart's quotation like that, out of its context”- said a friend of mine; to whom I replied:- “The way it is done in Concerto K216, it doesn't seem so to me. It is not quite safe in that context either.” In my piece, context is not a password. There, songs the like are not dependable one on the other, but solely- they sing to Pousseur. All of them are illuminated by Mozart- the thorough master of dialectics-; he, in his turn, a teacher to Pousseur, and Pousseur, my immediate teacher. Perhaps I have never understood dialectics, even less when it comes to music. The title was borrowed from an unforgettable Course that Pousseur delivered in Darmstadt, 1962.
Conception: Marcus Siqueira e Simona Cavuoto
Producers: Thiago Cury e Marcus Siqueira
Recorded by: Carlos (KK) Akamine
Recording Assistant: Silvio Romualdo
Studio Coordination: Shen Riberio
Mixed by: Homero Lotito (Trilha Certa Studio)
Mastered by: Homero Lotito (Reference Studio)
Recorded at Cachuera Studio on the following instruments J. B. Vuillaume de 1845 and David Baghé i Soler de 1997" (track 18)
Design: Paulo Vidal de Castro e Thais Vilanova
"Art": Julio Kohl
Maurício De Bonis
Paulistinha (imaginária) (2011) 6’33’’
Recitare (2011) 8’50’’
Willy Corrêa de Oliveira
¡Oh, este viejo y roto violín! (2011) 5’06’’
Quase Barrocas (2004-11) 8’00’’
Linhas de Eisenach 1’52’’
Willy Corrêa de Oliveira
Allgemeine Periodik (2009) 7’51’’
3 Capricci Urbani (2011) 11’ 35’’
Marcus Alessi Bittencourt
Um Móbile (2001) 12’23’’
Ciclo de 10 pequenas peças para violino solo
I - Estandarte 1'52"
II - Telegrama nº 1 0'23"
III - Arboreto 1'38"
IV - Losango Cáqui 1'22"
V - Telegrama nº 2 0'22"
VI - Primeiro Espelho 1'28"
VII - Segundo Espelho 0'48"
VIII - Trezentos e Cinquenta 0'55"
IX - Figura Alada 2'06"
X - Espelho Último 1'29"
Willy Corrêa de Oliveira
Arya per Yara (2011) 4’42"