Souvenirs of Spain & Italy | Cedille Records CDR90000190

Souvenirs of Spain & Italy


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Label: Cedille Records

Cat No: CDR90000190

Format: CD

Number of Discs: 1

Genre: Chamber

Release Date: 13th December 2019



The Grammy Award-winning Pacifica Quartet and multiple Grammy-winning guitarist Sharon Isbin join forces for an uncommon album of music for strings and guitar from the Baroque to the mid-20th century.

Souvenirs of Spain & Italy is the first joint recording by these renowned artists and marks Isbin’s Cedille Records debut.

The programme spotlights Italian-born composers influenced by Spanish idioms. Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Quintet for Guitar and String Quartet, op.143, is a seldom-heard gem demanding virtuosity from every player. Written for guitarist Andrés Segovia, it’s “an urbane work, rich in vibrant themes and dialogues among individual lines,” critic Allan Kozinn writes in the liner notes. Isbin and the Pacifica play Emilio Pujol’s guitar arrangement of Antonio Vivaldi’s Lute Concerto in D major, RV93. Isbin’s guitar-work in the dreamlike, meditative Largo movement features her own Baroque ornamentation. Luigi Boccherini’s Quintet for Guitar and String Quartet in D major, G448, melds the emerging classical style of late 18th-century Vienna with hints of Spanish flamenco. Spanish composer Joaquín Turina’s string quartet movement, La Oración del Torero, op.34, evokes the fervour of a matador’s private prayer before entering the bullring.

Isbin, “one of the best guitarists in the world” (Boston Globe), and the Pacifica, hailed as “nothing short of phenomenal” (The Telegraph), first performed together at the Aspen Music Festival. They’ve since toured their quartet-and-guitar programme across the U.S., to great acclaim.

The Pacifica’s Cedille catalogue of 11 albums includes collaborations with other leading instrumentalists such as clarinetist Anthony McGill, now principal clarinet of the New York Philharmonic; pianist Menahem Pressler of the Beaux Arts Trio; and violist Michael Tree of the Guarneri Quartet.

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