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Shining the Light on Granados’s Song of the Stars

August 17, 2009

In an article for the Wall Street Journal, 20 July 2009, Stuart Isacoff tells the story behind the recovery of a stellar choral work by Enrique Granados:

How to Find a Missing Masterpiece

Discoveries of unknown works by classical masters seem commonplace these days, with manuscripts by the likes of Bach, Vivaldi, Mozart and Beethoven popping up in library files and private collections with surprising frequency. Often though, amid all the excitement and bankable headlines, the artistic payoffs turn out to be minimal, or the claims greatly exaggerated: Witness the overblown and specious claims made about a spate of so-called Mendelssohn “world premieres” in New York recently. But a new release on Naxos of a forgotten work, “Song of the Stars” by the esteemed Spanish composer Enrique Granados, is real cause for celebration…

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Song of the Stars – A Celebration of Catalan Music
Choral Music by CASALS, GRANADOS, MORERA, OLTRA & BLANCAFORT
Voices of Ascension
Douglas Riva, piano
Mark Kruczek, organ
Erica Kiesewetter, violin

8.570533

A rich musical heritage and vibrant contemporary culture intersect in Catalunya in north-eastern Spain. Granados’s long-lost masterpiece Song of the Stars is comparable to a virtuoso piano concerto with chorus and organ rather than orchestra, gloriously combining Romantic-Modernista poetry with post-Wagnerian harmonies. The internationally famous cellist Pau Casals also composed a small body of very beautiful music, including the deeply spiritual choral works on this disc. Morera’s The Nightingale and Blancafort’s Love Song are evocative of their Catalan texts, while Oltra’s Echo and Prelude explore themes of memory and hope through images of nature.










 
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5:23:01 PM, 21 August 2014
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