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The Violin Festival - The First Performance

Tuesday, 9 April 2013 , ora 8.01
 
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The manufacturing of violins has stirred for centuries the imagination and craftsmanship of a few great instrument makers like Stradivari, Guarneri, Testore, Gagliano, who created something far greater than mere instruments, offering mankind true acoustic jewels.

On Monday, April 8th, 2013, at 19:00, the first meeting was with the violinist Bogdan Zvoristeanu - the concert master of the prestigious Geneva Suisse Romande orchestra (Switzerland) - and his Gagliano violin (1761) that once belonged to the collection of the composer Fritz Kreisler.

A feature report of the concert written by Dan Vasiliu:

"I will start this commentary with a melancholic note just like the violinist Bogdan Zvoristeanu's recital, with a slow, even sad, rhythm.

'I will start with Ciacona, which is a piece close to my heart. Ciacona was actually written for the Easter holiday.'

The Gagliano violin then receives a partner on stage - a guitar handled by the Italian Alessio Nebiolo - and the rhythm gets more intense.

'We will continue with two of Paganini's sonatas, because Paganini was not only a violin virtuoso, but also a guitar virtuoso.'

And then the sound of the violin stirs up nostalgia. The audience listens in silence.

'We will finish with Bartok's Romanian Dances - a setting for violin and guitar created by my colleague, Alessio Nebiolo.'

An intermission follows and this is the time when the public draws out its first conclusions and analyzes every detail.

'It is interesting how the violinist was placed with the back turned to the guitarist. It is not ignorance, it is an extraordinary harmony. The two musicians get along very nicely, the follow ups are accurate, Bogdan Zvoristeanu's gesticulation is clear, the guitarist reacting immediately; interesting projections of both instruments. What can I say? I'll give it an A!'

But time flies by very quickly and we take our seats once more. This time with a gentle andaluzian flavoured rhythm.

'After the intermission, we will perform Sarasate's Andaluzian Romance. '

From the Spanish parts we find ourselves out of a sudden in the heart of Ireland, and our feet seem to want to move, to dance; well-known rhythms, anonymous authors. But how does a Gagliano violin cope with such variations? How is she any different from her sisters?

'I have tried many times contemporary violins, newer, older, from the 20th century, from the 19th century, but I have personally got to the conclusion that antique violins have a certain sound quality, a characteristic way of resonating and over time such a thing cannot be achieved anymore. Why? I assume that because the wood was performed with, it resonates and it's molecules adjust accordingly, which creates this sound quality that is unique and it practically aspires to perfection.'

The recital ends with the tango rhythm created by the expert Astor Piazolla.

'I appreciate this programme because it is diverse. We are practically on a journey not only in time but also geographically through different regions of the world, from where we simply acquire some very typical aspects and impressions.'

At the ending there is a storm of applause. The two artist embrace on the stage and an elderly lady gives Bogdan Zvoristeanu a white rose. Afterward, the stage empties but the applauses continue on and on... until the artists decide that the evening is not over just yet! Again Piazollo! And then the story repeats itself except for the white rose, but it had truly ended. Goodbye, Granada!

On Tuesday, April 9th, there will be a performance just as captivating. It even involves a duel. And not just any duel but between grand names - Liviu Prunaru's Stradivarius will fight in game with a Guarneri that belonged to Enescu but now it is being used by Gabriel Croitoru. An occasion that should not be missed!

But let's stop a little at Gagliano and draw the conclusions. The performance on Monday evening was: 'Admirable! Unexpected! I am sorry for the ones that did not come. The concert was magnificent!'



Translated by Roxana Țicămucă and Elena Daniela Radu
MTTLC, The University of Bucharest