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  • chrisdumigan

Artyom Dervoed : Ghosts and Shadows - Music of Spain : CD

MUDARRA : Fantasia No10: TARREGA: Recuerdos de la Alhambra; La Mariposa: DE FALLA : Le Tombeau de Claude Debussy: MORENO TORROBA: Castillos de Espana ( 14 movements) : RODRIGO : Invocacion y Danza; Sonata Giocosa in A Major

Artyom Dervoed

Melodia : CD

Born in the USSR in 1981, Dervoed has become one of the country’s major guitar exponents and has many fine recordings and live events to his credit. This latest recording covers a variety of Spanish music, most of which will be well known to most of you. He opens with the famous Fantasia No10 by Alonso Mudarra, but what is interesting here is his rather relaxed speed. Whereas most players take to it like they are in a race, he takes it surprisingly leisurely, which is obviously quite deliberate, and to be fair, it really works at this quite different speed. Then perhaps the most famous Spanish piece of all the Recuerdos de la Alhambra of Tarrega. His technique is, as you might expect, phenomenal, but the emotion he puts in the piece is quite something to hear. I have heard many versions of this over the years, and his comes near the top, for bringing the listener emotionally into the work. Tarrega’s La Mariposa (The Butterfly) follows and flies effortlessly around in a very musical way. Then he takes to the only guitar solo work of Manuel De Falla, the famous Le Tombeau de Claude Debussy that is again a work that one can find in a vast number of different speeds and interpretations. Dervoed doesn’t linger here and in spite of its very sad and often disturbing sounds, he never forgets its inherent dance rhythms. The majority of the recital however is taken up with fourteen pieces from Federico Moreno – Torroba’s set Castillos de Espana, and here he brings out all the beauty in the melodies and the warmth of the harmonies. As a set they are hugely contrasting, some movingly emotional, others very dance – like, but all with that effortless quality that Moreno Torroba always gave to his pieces, a great tune and a wonderful gloss to his works, even though he couldn’t play the guitar. The final composer, like his predecessor also was not a guitarist but that didn’t stop him writing some of the most famous guitar works in our repertoire. He begins with the very technically demanding Invocacion y Danza, a work that often sees off even some of our most revered guitarists. Here he make a fine job of bringing out its vast contrasts in sound and colour, and makes a great deal of the bitingly dissonant passages that Rodrigo manages so well. The Sonata Giocoso is one of those guitar pieces that sounds wonderful, and yet is such a handful to actually play successfully, and yet Dervoed has no difficulties whatsoever, and the technical arsenal he can deliver is very impressive, but what makes this and every other piece in this fine set so satisfying is the musicality that is evident in every performance.

This is a really fine recording, and as he has done a number of others, I would suggest that this man’s recorded oeuvre is one for interested players to go and have a listen to. Wonderful !

Chris Dumigan

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