Houston Symphony Broadcasts

Celebrating Hispanic Heritage With The Fiesta Sinfónica!

Presenting the 2016 Fiesta Sinfónica concert with guest pianist Michel Camilo.

On the next Houston Symphony Broadcast, we celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with the 2016 Fiesta Sinfónica concert, featuring guest pianist Michel Camilo, recently recorded on September 18th!

Beginning the concert is the Overture to West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein. Given that one half of the cast consists of Puerto Rican characters, the Latin influence in Bernstein’s score should come as no surprise!

Following that is Michel Camilo’s performance of George Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue, ostensibly a concert piece inspired by New York City, but full of jazz, blues, and Latin idioms. In the segment above, Michel describes how he approaches the piece. Check out my original interview with him here!

The most recent work on this program is by Peruvian composer Jimmy López. América Salvaje is inspired by the poem Blasón by José Santos Chocano:

I am the singer of America, indigenous and wild my lyre has a soul, my song an ideal. My verse does not rock with the slow swing of a hanging tropical hammock…

When I feel lnca, I render vasallage to the Sun, which gives me the sceptre of its royal power; when I feel Hispanic and evoke colonial times my verses seem like crystal trumpets.

My fantasy comes from a Moorish lineage: the Andes are made of silver, but the lion, of gold, and the two castes I melt with epic heat.

The blood is Spanish and Inca is the heart-beat; and had I not been a Poet, perhaps I would have been an adventurous white man or an Indian emperor. (Translation by the composer)

The final piece of the concert comes from ballet music by Argentine composer Alberto Ginastera. Estancia celebrates a day on a ranch in the pampas of Argentina, and four picturesque movements illustrate the life of the gaucho, or ranch hand.

Tune in for this concert Sunday (10/2) on News 88.7 or Wednesday (10/5) on Houston Public Media Classical at 8 PM.

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