Presenting this project, the Milano Saxophone Quartet leads the public through a real Metamorphosis. The audience realizes the quartet’s sound-transformation, which shows, through the performance and the different styles, one of its main idiomatic characteristics i.e. the flexibility.
The program begins with the “Quatuor op. 102″ by A. Glazunov, which in its history already presents the first metamorphosis. The composer, in fact, discovers the saxophone in a jazz club in Paris. It’s only when he listened the “Quatuor de la garde républicaine” that he decided to write for this chamber group.
Glazunov was impressed by the ductility of the instrument and he described it with such interesting words: “I hardly believe that this is the same instrument we can listen in the Jazz music. The purity and sweetness of the sound wonders me!”
After Glazunov’s sphere we move to a completely different style with the work “Ciudades” by Guillermo Lago. This is a collection of pieces in which every city presented is musically described by different melodies, rhythms and harmonies.
Remaining in the folk-mood, the program proposes “Tango virtuoso”. The composer and organist Thierry Escaich composed for the saxophone quartet a chamber-music’s masterpiece, who let the instruments going through the dance-mood in the organ art.
The program leaves us with the last metamorphosis: the “Slavonic Dances” by Dvorak. These are the clear testimony of how the folk music has developed in according to gain a very important role in the classical music repertoire .
At the time of heightened expectations for greater philological rigour in publications and musical productions, the Milano Saxophone Quartet offers a unique recording with arrangements of works by Gabrieli, Scarlatti/Sciarrino, Verdi and Puccini. Many performers study manuscripts, meticulously follow the original tempo markings and play on period instruments with goal to create an experience as close as possible to the composer’s original conception; others appropriate musical scores that were not originally intended for their own instruments. Consequently, the arrangements selected for this recording will seem more like recreation: not only do they show the influenceof the arranger but also that of the musician and of his or her own cultural, musical and instrumental background.
The project is focused on a repertoire dedicated to the unusual ensemble of the saxophone quartet and the organ. It has a diverse programme of contemporary works which present different concepts: a travel through different styles and different composers with two instruments which are chronologically very distant and have two different paths of development in the history of music.
Enjott Schneider ”Crucifixus”
William Albright ”Valley of Fire”
Carlo Gesualdo da Venosa/ Salvatore Sciarrino “2 Madrigali”
Gerard Beljon “Didgeridoo”
Barbara Thompson ”4 Mirages”
A sophisticated and divine singer of melodies which reflect her unique and unrepeatable voice: Antonella Ruggiero, one of the most important and famous Italian singers is the guest star of the “Mai Soli” project.
Already at the beginning, the collaboration found a successful response from the audience. The repertoire consists of the singer’s greatest and of other unreleased works.
The selection of the repertoire, which varies from rock to classical music and the incredible variety of colours and styles define the base concept of the project. The original arrangement uses and valorises the sonority of the quartet. Additionally, the mix of the quartet and the voice is sometimes enriched by percussion instruments.
“Dulce et Decorum Est” describes a poison gas attack during World War I. Composer Maarten De Splenter grew up in Ypres (Belgium), the center of intense and sustained battles between German and Allied forces. Ypres was also the first place in the worldwhich experienced the horrible consequences of chemical weapons.”Dulce et Decorum Est” will be part of a large symphonic tribute to Ypres (composed by De Splenter) on the occasion of the 100th World War I anniversary. (M. de Splenter)
Bernd Franke “On the dignity of man”
Giya Kancheli “Amao omi”
Maarten De Splenter “Dulce et decorum est”