Dances and Elegies for Classical Guitar - Francesco Mariani

Dances and Elegies for Classical Guitar - Francesco Mariani

Saturday 9 December, 2017

7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Price: £10/£8

Guitarist Francesco Mariani studied at the RNCM with Gordon Crosskey & John Williams. Since then he has given performances and workshops at the Bath International Guitar Festival, the Wirral Guitar Festival, the London Classical Guitar Festival and the Royal Greenwich Guitar Festival as well as TV and radio performances for Yorkshire and Granada TV and Classic FM.

Cancion Del Emperador (sobre ‘Mille Regretz’ de Josquin) – Luys de Narváez
Diferencias sobre ‘Guardame Las Vacas’ – Luys de Narváez
Chaconne, from Partita No 2 in D minor, for solo violin BWV 1004 – Johann Sebastian Bach
Ständchen, from Schwanengesang D 957 – Franz Schubert, arranged by JK Mertz
Elegie für die Gitare – Johann Kaspar Mertz
Oblivion – Astor Piazzolla
Elogio de la Danza – Leo Brouwer
Prelude No 1 in E minor – Hector Villa-Lobos
Chôros No 1 – Hector Villa-Lobos

The programme of ‘Dances & Elegies’ is built around Francesco’s new transcription of J.S Bach’s Chaconne. Originally for solo violin, Bach used the rhythm of the Chaconne, a folk form popular in Spain amongst guitarists and reputedly an import from South America as the basis of a 15 minute set of variations on a ground bass. Bach wrote the piece while mourning the death of his wife and mother of seven children, Maria, and it is hard to escape the idea that this influenced the nature of the work profoundly. Despite being rooted in a dance form the piece has a strong elegaic and spiritual quality and contains numerous quotations from Bach’s choral church music.

On one stave, for a small instrument, the man writes a whole world of the deepest thoughts and most powerful feelings. If I imagined that I could have created, even conceived the piece, I am quite certain that the excess of excitement and earth-shattering experience would have driven me out of my mind”   Johannes Brahms

A dance of life & death, in the architecture of a cathedral”   Violinist Gidon Kremer

The rest of the programme features works that contain elements of dance and elegy – Astor Piazzolla’s haunting Oblivion is a slow tango, Cuban Leo Brouwer’s Elogio De La Danza an exciting exploration of contrast, rhythm and colour, Mertz’ Elegie and his arrangement of Schubert’s song Standchen show the guitar’s true romantic heritage and Villa-Lobos Prelude No.1 and Choros No.1 reveal the contrasting sides of the great Brazillian’s musical character.

Francesco teaches at the Purcell School for Young Musicians and directs the Stoke Newington Guitar Festival, which returns for the fourth time in November 2018.

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