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Classical 101

Villa-Lobos Guitar Concerto with Sharon Isbin on Fretworks

Join me for Fretworks for music of the classical guitar this Saturday at 7 pm on Classical 101. This week, from Latin America, we’ll hear the Guitar Concerto of Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos. Sharon Isbin will be featured in her 2004 Warner Classics CD that got great reviews for her performances with the New York Philharmonic led by Jose Serebrier, not only for the Villa-Lobos but also for the Rodrigo and Ponce concertos on the recording.


The other piece for guitar with orchestral accompaniment on the program is the Capriol Suite by Peter Warlock with Christopher Parkening and the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields conducted by Iona Brown.

The Capriol Suite was written for string orchestra in 1926 by the English composer, whose real name was Philip Heseltine. This 6-movement suite is based on 16th century dance tunes and makes a natural choice for arranging into the version we’ll hear on Fretworks.

From the late 17th century, we’ll hear music by Johann Schenck performed on authentic instruments by lutenist Luca Pianca and Vittorio Ghielmi playing the viola da gamba. Spanish guitarist David Martinez will play Introduction and Caprice by Giulio Regondi, a bravura showpiece by the 19th century guitarist-composer.

To conclude the hour, I have a couple of selections from a recent CD from Azica Records featuring the guitar music of Ernest Bacon performed by Bradley Colten. Ernest Bacon was born in Chicago in 1898 and had as an early mentor, the American poet and folklorist Carl Sandburg. Bacon wrote many art songs and works for piano, orchestra, and the stage. He was part of a group of composers who helped forge an American sound that included Aaron Copland, Virgil Thomson, Roy Harris, and others.

Join me for Fretworks Saturday and Wednesday evening at 7 on Classical 101.