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John Sunier
Audiophile Audition, August 2004

Though best-known for his guitar music, the Italian composer Castelnuovo-Tedesco wrote a great deal of piano music in his youth and later contributed scores to many Hollywood films from 1940 to 1956. His unusual name derives from the Spanish district of Castilla Nueva, from which his ancestors had been expelled by the Spanish in the diaspora of the Sephardim Jews in 1492. He was also a concert pianist, and his pieces are evocative little tone-paintings of various activities such as sailing and fishing, and of flora and fauna. He had studied with Pizzetti, who gave him a lyrical voice, and the piano music of Debussy and Ravel also influences these works. Some reminded me of Mompou's piano pieces, though on the livelier side.

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