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Paul Fowles
Classical Guitar Magazine, February 2013

Superb playing and a debut programme that marks a welcome detour from the usual path. © Classical Guitar Magazine

Brian Reinhart
MusicWeb International, January 2013

Cecilio Perera’s debut guitar recital is a caring homage to Latin American music. There are many treats here…The familiar names of Manuel Ponce and Leo Brouwer are paired with the Mexican guitarist Julio César Oliva and the Venezuelan musician…Vicente Emilio Sojo. The result is an hour-plus of enchantment.

Highlights are many, but they include Oliva’s Tangomania…a sonata comprising four love letters to the tangos of Piazzolla. They’re utterly wonderful takes on the tango medium, with breathtaking melodies that sometimes teasingly stop mid-sentence, letting the listener hungrily imagine the rest, before resuming.

Leo Brouwer’s Sonata contains an evocative homage to Scriabin and a quotation from Beethoven’s Sixth Symphony. Add to this some soulful bolero dances…The finale is more surprising, a percussive and rigorous toccata, full of snaps and surprises, which Perera digs into with real flair.

The Naxos Guitar Laureate series is one of the most reliable in the industry: produced, recorded, and supervised by guitarist Norbert Kraft and his pianist wife Bonnie Silver. This consistently produces highly talented performers and recorded sound which presents them in the best possible light…the presentation is excellent…The main thing is the repertoire here…the combination of faux-baroque music by Ponce, Venezuelan ballads by Sojo, and four loving tributes to the tango by Oliva should be irresistible. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Kenneth Keaton
American Record Guide, January 2013

Another delight from a gifted young artist. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

David Denton
David's Review Corner, September 2012

Another day dawns and another guitar competition prizewinner emerges. Will there be room for them all in the upper echelons of the musical world? I doubt it, but the young Mexican, Cecilio Perera—winner of the 2011 Michele Pittaluga Guitar Competition—has already created a career as performer and teacher, presently holding the post of professor at the Mozarteum University in Salzburg. The disc opens with a breathless account of Ponce’s Preludio and he seems to enjoy presenting himself with considerable demands in terms of agility, the Gigue taken at a tempo a long way from the intended dance. I would have equally liked a little more of the ‘moderato’ indication in the opening Allegro of the Ponce’s First Sonata. Yet present him with the extreme difficulties of Leo Brouwer’s Sonata, and musically he seems to relax, the many ‘effects’ the work calls for created in the most varied musical colours. It is a piece already well represented in the Naxos catalogue, but this is the performance I would want, the unhurried central Saraband de Scriabin quite magical. More comfortable tempos continue in the world premiere recording of Julio Cesar Oliva’s Tangomania. Though composed in 2011, and taking its inspiration from Piazzolla, it is in a purely tonal style from a much earlier era, the third section having a particularly catchy tune. Vincent Emilio Sojo’s Five Pieces from Venezuela are charming miniatures, while Ponce’s equally engaging Tres Canciones populares mexicanas make for a happy conclusion. Audible left hand shifts are few; the playing technically flawless, and the Canadian team have produced another of their top-flight recordings. © 2012 David’s Review Corner

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