Farándula castiza

Facebook | 1 febrero 2024

Crítica sobre Farándula castiza @ Valletta, Malta



RUTH VERONA, violoncello
PABLO ZAPICO, Baroque guitar
AARÓN ZAPICO, harpsichord and director

Let it be said from the start how very enjoyable these concerts were. The very zestful energy which was in the air, with abundant colour and rhythm were simply infectious.
Originally, Forma Antiqva was only scheduled to present one concert, on the evening of 24 January. Unfortunately days before, the French ensemble Les contres-sujets scheduled to perform on 25 January could not make it to Malta. Whatever the reason, the very worried Festival Artistic Director, Kenneth Zammit Tabona was extremely relieved and grateful to Forma Antiqua for stepping in with a second, completely different programme, which had a slightly different line-up.

Forma Antiqva is a Madrid-based ensemble with a very notably distinguished presence in Spain and abroad. It is also known for the research carried out and which has resulted bringing to life old Spanish music which was at the core of the first concert.
As the first line-up above shows, there is an uncommon fact which is having three brothers in the same ensemble. The director is the elder brother of twins Pablo and Daniel. Both twins are theorbists and Pablo comes to Malta whenever he is needed to perform with the Valletta Baroque Ensemble. In both concerts he performed on his other speciality: the Baroque guitar.

There are different meanings to "farándula" and "castiza". The nearest one could get to in Spanish music-related terms is that "farándula" refers to strolling musicians/street entertainers, precursors of the Mexican Mariáchis. "Castiza" is close to caste, not in a rigid social sense but referring to a particular ensemble.

The first concert had to have a beginning, ergo it opened with a very energetic Overture marked Allegro, to the opera Iphigenia en Tracia, by José de Nebra (1702-68). This was followed by an even livelier Fandango by Bernardo Álvarez Acero (1766-1821). It was great fun with most of the performers stamping hard on the platform. One could also observe the solid rapport between them and which never waned throughout both concerts.

Glancing at each other across the space, with "conspitatorial" smiles flying all over the place, it was so clear that they thoroughly enjoyed performing. They really projected this feeling to the audience, which relished every moment.

The concert continued with three section marked as "Jornadas" (days) and Finale.
The First Day began with another Allegro from Sinfonia n.3 by José Castel (1737-1807). By comparison there followed the very relaxing Andante alla francese (Sinfonia de La Nitteti) by Nicolás Conforto (1718-93). The latter in turn was in great contrast to the agitated Allegro assai which followed as the first of three movements from the Sinfonia a più stromenti (sic!) Bas-3, by Vicente Baset (1718-64). Calmer waters returned with the remaining Adagio and Minuete.

Day 2 consisted of four works, the first of which was by the only internationally known composer. This was Luigi Boccherini (1743-1805), famous cellist and composer who lived in Spain for 44 years before he died there in poverty. Not surprisingly, some of his music has a Spanish flavour. His Tempo di menuetto Op. VI was performed by the violins, cello and harpsichord. Cello and theorbo performed the Sinfonia de Angelica e Medoro
(Andante). Then it was back to Conforto and more stamping of feet in his Fandango. Vicente Baset reappeared to close the day with his Apertura a più stromenti, Bas-7 with Andante assai, Andante moderato and very fast Presto.

Day 3 also featured four works the first of which was Cumbees, by Santiago de Murcia (1673-1739). After this type of song, Conforto returned with Sinfonia de Siroe, Con ira, in an Andante alla francese and brilliant Allegro.

Another new name was Francisco Corselli (1705-78). He was the only other Italian composer on the list. He lived in Madrid from 1734 until his death. Obertura de la Cautela de La Amistad was a beautiful andante performed by the Zapico brothers.

The day concluded with José de Nebra's Minué y Allegro from Iphigenia en Tracia.

Finale. This opened with Castel's graceful Minuetto from Sinfonia n.3. The definite end was with all the Ensemble performing Vicente Baset's Apertura a più stromenti Bas-5. There was verve and energy in this final piece.

Final? (In)famous last word because the very insistent audience wanted more, and was rewarded with an encore.

Albert George Storace



Otras críticas sobre el mismo concierto

Malta, XII° Valletta Baroque Festival: “Farándula Castiza“ (gbopera) enero 2024
L’offerta strumentale del Valletta Baroque Festival si articola principalmente in due direzioni: ripresa dei classici e riscoperta di autori e tradizioni musicali più rare. Proprio a questo secondo filone pertengono i due spettacoli strumentali cui assistiamo, a cominciare dalla “Farándula Castiza“ di Forma Antiqva, formazione barocca spagnola affacciatasi ormai da circa un ventennio sulla scena internazionale. Il concerto si apre con pezzi che il gruppo ha già affrontato in studio nell’ultimo album “La caramba” (su etichetta Winter & Winter): si...


Premio Sello FestClásica (Asociación de Festivales Españoles de Música Clásica) a Forma Antiqva y su programa «Farándula castiza», 2021.
Premio GEMA (Asociación de Grupos Españoles de Música Antigua) a la «Mejor Dirección 2019» para Aarón Zapico.
Medalla de Oro del Foro Europeo Cum Laude, 2019.
Premio MIN de la Música Independiente - Mejor Álbum de Música Clásica 2019 para «Concerto Zapico Vol. 2».
NPR Music's Best Classical Albums Of 2018 para «Concerto Zapico Vol. 2».
Premio GEMA (Asociación de Grupos Españoles de Música Antigua) al «Mejor Grupo de Música Barroca y Clasicismo 2016».
Premio GEMA (Asociación de Grupos Españoles de Música Antigua) a la «Mejor Producción Discográfica 2016» por «Crudo Amor - Agostino Steffani».
Premio FestClásica (Asociación de Festivales Españoles de Música Clásica) a Forma Antiqva y su programa «Concerto Zapico», 2015.
Nominación International Classical Music Awards «Opera Zapico», 2014.
Nominación International Classical Music Awards «Concerto Zapico», 2012.
Premio AMAS de la Música en Asturias, 2012.
Premio Serondaya a la Innovación Cultural, 2012.
Nominación a los International Classical Music Awards por «Amore x Amore», 2011.
Premio «Asturiano del Mes» del periódico La Nueva España, 2011.
Premio al «Grupo del Año» de la Radio Televisión Pública de Asturias, 2010.


Universo Zapico

c/ Ramón y Cajal, 18 - 3º Izq.
33900 Langreo, Asturias (España)


Proyecto financiado por el INAEM, Ministerio de Cultura

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