ROBERT BEASER (b.1954): Guitar Concerto, Notes on a Southern Sky for Solo Guitar, For Orchestra: Evening Prayer, Ground O.
Catalogue Number: 06S080
Reference: CKD 528
Description: Beaser's concerto is a tour de force for the soloist, who enjoys idiomatic, natural writing for the instrument, ample opportunity for virtuosity, and lyrical and dramatic material that acknowledge the traditions associated with the instrument. The work is very tonal, with a fresh and original approach to harmony; a testament to the natural expression that Beaser brings to the idiom is that much of the first two movements especially could be taken for a composition by a guitarist-composer from a southern European country strongly associated with the instrument's history. The first movement is dynamic and virtuosic, in modified sonata form. The second 'Tombeau' is stately, with Baroque elements, rising to a powerful Romantic climax. The finale blends Andalusian and Bluegrass styles in an energetic collision and enthusiastic collaboration of cultures. Notes .. was written for Fisk, a long-time collaborator with the composer. The flamboyant, technically challenging work pays tribute to folk idioms of Latin America. Evening Prayer borrows an Hungarian folk song transcribed by Kodaly and works it into a substantial folk-inflected neo-romantic tone poem with echoes of Copland, Bernstein and Bartók. Ground O is a desolate, elegiac 9/11 memorial piece, sad and profoundly moving, not without moments of radiant hope. Eliot Fisk (guitar), Royal Scottish National Orchestra; José Serebrier.