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The Orchestra of the Americas & Carlos Miguel Prieto - de Falla - The Observer

Spanish by birth, drawn to the musical sensibilities of France, Manuel de Falla (1876-1946) combined diverse passions in his scores: from early church music to folk song, zarzuela and splashes of European avant garde. In Paris he encountered Debussy, Ravel, Diaghilev and Stravinsky. Steeped in these influences, he fled back to Madrid in 1914 at the start of war.

On a new album, the Orchestra of the Americas, conducted by Carlos Miguel Prieto, performs Falla’s ballet The Three-Cornered Hat and his quasi piano concerto Nights in the Garden of Spain (Linn) with the mezzo-soprano Alejandra Gómez Ordazand pianist Jorge Federico Osorio. This pan-American orchestra consists of musicians aged 18 to 30, from 25 different countries. The playing gleams and crackles, with Nights in the Garden at once sensuous and darkly dramatic in its depiction of the jasmine-infused gardens of Spanish-Arabian Andalusia. The live recording comes from their summer residency in Mexico City just a year ago, a different era. But these brilliant young players give us hope for an orchestral future.

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The Observer
16 August 2020