> Rara: Leo Brouwer [AD]: Classical CD Reviews- Oct 2002 MusicWeb(UK)

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RARA: Leo Brouwer
Cornelius CARDEW (1936-1981)

1. Material
Hans Werner HENZE (b.1926)

2. Memories (from "Cimarron")
Leo BROUWER (b.1939)

3. Exaedros I
Sylvano BUSSOTTI (b.1931)

4. Rara (eco sierologico)
Maurice OHANA (1914-1992)

5. Si le jour parait
Josep Maria Mestres QUADRENY (b.1929)

6. Perludi para guitarra
Girolamo ARRIGO (b.1930)

7. Serenata per chitarra
Leo BROUWER (b.1939)

8. La espiral eternal
Cristobal HALFFTER m(b.1930)

9. Codex I
Juan BLANCO (b.1919)

10. Contrapunto Esacial III-c
Leo Brouwer – Guitar
DG 471 589-2 [76:05]

I feel confident in my assumption that Leo Brouwer is one of the most respected personalities on the classic guitar scene today. His exciting, original compositions have embellished the instrument’s modern repertoire significantly and his efforts to promote the guitar’s status are exemplary. Sadly his own playing career was cut short by a hand injury, but there remain a number of his recordings in the catalogue.

Deutsche Grammophon have now reissued this recording - first available during the 1970s on vinyl. The playing illustrates perfectly Leo Brouwer’s highly developed guitar technique and skills of interpretation. He plays not only of his own works, but mainly those of other composers that presumably Brouwer held in high esteem; certainly high enough to record their work. This in itself is possibly an insight into the influences that he himself draws upon.

All the composers included here were born during the first half of the 20th century. The names of Hans Werner Henze and Maurice Ohana may be familiar to the more enthusiastic guitar aficionados, but most are relatively unknown.

It must be said that in no-way is this disc easy listening. The music may only appeal to the advocates of atonality or serialism or what is generally regarded as the avant-garde. But I still feel it is an important document in the times of this exceptional man, Leo Brouwer

Thankfully within the inlay notes there is some concise explanation about not all the works and composers but at least a few. These help the uninitiated along regarding the musical language. Given the complexity of the music this is essential.

Andy Daly

see also Andy Daly's Leo Brouwer page

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