Carlos Bonell - Classical Guitar “ From Penny Lane to Andalucia 7/3/24 The Society presented Carlos Bonell. Beginning with an Allemande from a Suite by French Baroque composer Robert De Visée, Carlos produced a refined and delicate tone. Full of contrasts, coloured throughout by delightful ornamentation, the pace picked up in the Courante, then the Sarabande and a lively Gigue – all performed with Carlos Bonell’s characteristic grace. A passionate performance of the wonderful Villa-Lobos Prelude number 4 was stunningly contrasted by a well-crafted Choros full of excitement and intrigue. Moved by the moment and responding to the audience, Carlos diverged from the programme to play two more Villa-Lobos preludes. The Prelude number 2 was a delight to the ears, full of iconic moments unique to the guitar. His interpretation of the Prelude number 1 was outstanding; full of contrast with a wonderful imitative cello-like bass melody line; that Carlos owned the music was underscored by an intuitive interpretation of the closing section. The magic of the Maestro continued with two recently self-penned pieces: the jazzy Variations was a semi-introspective exploration of harmony and melody. Then the premier performance of Love in Age 2 (playing) written in 2023; it paradoxically combines an imaginative expression of freedom and the joy of discovery with a meditative quality. A repeated motif in the bass, overlain by arpeggiated chords, is echoed by melodic bursts in the treble strings that gradually develop into a chordal melody played across the treble strings. The applause confirmed the audience’s appreciation of his works. After the interval, Carlos performed his composition At the Edge of the Horizon , an atmospheric piece combining melody and harmony with introspective moments. Carlos moved comfortably into the music of Albéniz. First a wonderfully evocative rendition of Granada; then the brilliant Asturias in which Carlos showed his mastery of the extended crescendo from pianissimo to time-defying sforzandos. A melting slow section succeeded the electrifying opening, before a return to the initial theme and, like a storm receding, to a gentle close. In Carlos’ unique arrangements of Beatles numbers , simple melodic lines and harmonies become complex interwoven expressions of joy. The absolute foot tapper Penny Lane stays with one long after the concert. The melody to Here Comes the Sun received special treatment when it was played in octaves; the mid-section contained downward flowing arpeggios against the melody and an expectation of the piece about to end contradicted by an exultant return to the tune. Las Morillas de Jaén and Los Cuatro Muleros , two pieces inspired by the poems of Garcia Lorca, arranged by Carlos and framed in the Flamenco idiom provided a brilliant end to the concert. His rasgueado - flamenco strumming, and the superb tones produced at the 16 th fret of his Greg Smallman guitar were of particular note. Carlos encored with his arrangement of the Flamenco traditional Malagueña – played with verve, this was guitar fun and showmanship to the delight of all. Reflecting on the remarkable musicianship of Carlos Bonell, one realizes that when art transcends what is by comparison mere professionalism – one quickly exhausts the superlatives. IM
Rehearsals
Carlos Bonell - Classical Guitar “ From Penny Lane to Andalucia 7/3/24 Beginning with an Allemande from a Suite by French Baroque composer Robert De Visée, Carlos produced a refined and delicate tone. Full of contrasts, coloured throughout by delightful ornamentation, the pace picked up in the Courante, then the Sarabande and a lively Gigue all performed with characteristic grace. A passionate performance of the wonderful Villa-Lobos Prelude number 4 was stunningly contrasted by a well- crafted Choros full of excitement and intrigue. Moved by the moment,Carlos diverged from the programme to play two more Villa-Lobos preludes. The Prelude number 2 was a delight to the ears, full of iconic moments unique to the guitar. His interpretation of the Prelude number 1 was outstanding; full of contrast with a wonderful imitative cello-like bass melody line; that Carlos owned the music was underscored by an intuitive interpretation of the closing section. The magic of the Maestro continued with two self-penned pieces: the jazzy Variations was a semi-introspective exploration of harmony and melody. Then the premier performance of Love in Age 2 (playing) written in 2023; it paradoxically combines an imaginative expression of freedom and the joy of discovery with a meditative quality. A repeated motif in the bass, overlain by arpeggiated chords, is echoed by melodic bursts in the treble strings that gradually develop into a chordal melody played across the treble strings. The applause confirmed the audience’s appreciation. After the interval, Carlos performed his composition At the Edge of the Horizon , an atmospheric piece combining melody and harmony with introspective moments. Carlos moved comfortably into the music of Albéniz. First a wonderfully evocative rendition of Granada; then the brilliant Asturias in which Carlos showed his mastery of the extended crescendo from pianissimo to time-defying sforzandos. A melting slow section succeeded the electrifying opening, before a return to the initial theme and, like a storm receding, to a gentle close. In Carlos’ unique arrangements of Beatles numbers , simple melodic lines and harmonies become complex interwoven expressions of joy. The foot tapper Penny Lane stays with one long after the concert. The melody to Here Comes the Sun received special treatment when it was played in octaves; the mid-section contained downward flowing arpeggios against the melody and an expectation of the piece about to end contradicted by an exultant return to the tune. Las Morillas de Jaén and Los Cuatro Muleros , inspired by the poems of Garcia Lorca, arranged by Carlos and framed in the Flamenco idiom provided a brilliant end to the concert. His rasgueado - flamenco strumming, and the superb tones produced at the 16 th fret of his Greg Smallman guitar were of particular note. Carlos encored with his arrangement of the Flamenco traditional Malagueña played with verve, this was guitar fun and showmanship to the delight of all. Reflecting on the remarkable musicianship of Carlos Bonell, one realizes that when art transcends what is by comparison mere professionalism one quickly exhausts the superlatives. IM