Cantigas de Amigoby Valdo Sciammarella Performer:
Heather Coltman (Piano),
Diane McNaron ()
Length: 14 Minutes 33 Secs.
Quarteto Credo, for violin, viola, cello & pianoby Valdo Sciammarella Performer:
Karen Bentley Pollick (Violin),
Craig Hultgren (Cello),
Adam Bowles (Piano),
Melanie Richardson Rogers (Viola)
Written: 1972 Venue: Sound of Birmingham Productions, Shoal C Length: 17 Minutes 48 Secs.
Average Customer Review: ( 2 Customer Reviews )
CD review: Rosas de Pulpa, Rosas de CalMay 23, 2012By DR M. See All My Reviews"Diane McNaron: The Music of Valdo Sciammarella. by Michael Huebner, Birmingham News, 7.`8.2010 Five stars out of five Composer Valdo Sciammarella is practically unknown outside his native Argentina. An Amazon search for recordings turned up three entries -- scanty selections among other Latin American works. Leave it to the adventurous Birmingham soprano Diane McNaron to shed long-overdue light on sumptuous vocal music by a 86-year-old composer. In fact, McNaron has devoted an entire CD to Sciammarella's music, including three song collections, a suite of piano pieces and a piano quartet. Sciammarella's vocal collections on the album emanate from the sensual poetry of Gustavo Adolfo Becquer, Pablo Neruda and Francisco Javier, and his musical language falls right in line -- romantic, evocative and visceral. The piano in the "Si al mecer," the ethereal second song of "Cuatro Canciones," portrays a delicate "whispering wind." Yearning harmonies swell to emotional highs in "Volveran," McNaron singing "ardent words of love" with heartfelt emotion. "Hoy como ayer" is set in minor-key angst in a slow tango rhythm. The nearly voyeuristic sensuality of Pablo Neruda's poem, "Campesina," builds to soaring passion. Eight short settings of Francisco Javier's poetry exhibit a vast romantic range in "Cantigas de amigo," from the somber "Amigo, te auerdas?" to the reflective "Sonreias, amigo." McNaron gives each song a life of its own. Her bold interpretations may have opened a door for singers in search of great art songs. Pianist Heather Coltman provides balance and freshness with her sensitive accompaniment. Another side of Sciammarella is represented in his instrumental music. A set of short piano pieces, played authoritatively by Coltman, vacillates from Stravinky-esque rhythmic play to unabashed dissonance. A piano quartet, featuring violinist Karen Bentley Pollick, violist Melanie Richardson Rogers and cellist Craig Hultgren, traverses from sweeping chromaticism to bouncy cabaret rhythms to a tense finale."Report Abuse
ROSAS DE PULPA, ROSAS DE CAL: a CD of DepthMay 12, 2012By O. Lawrence See All My Reviews"Before discovering this album, I had never heard of Valdo Sciammarella, though information about the prolific Argentine composer is widely available on the Internet. Born in 1924, he has composed in genres of song, opera, piano, choral, ballet and orchestral chamber music. The title ROSAS DE PULPA, ROSAS DE CAL,(Roses of Flesh, Roses of Lime,) is taken from the Pablo Neruda poem Campesina and appropriately describes the expressive palette of Sciammarella -- bitter sweet, often dissonant, sometimes romantic, Twentieth-Century in idiom, passionate but simultaneously intellectual. He chose first-rate poetry: the aforementioned Neruda and Gustav Bécquer, plus the Argentinean poets, F. I. Bernádez and Francisco Javier. Soprano Diane McNaron fascinatingly interprets this palette with a complex voice of extensive range and the story-telling capacity of an actor. The text is crystal clear with Spanish more attentive than most American singers. Though the opening songs, Cuatro canciones, are mezzo in range, in Cantigas de amigo she displays some deft coloratura and breath-taking, high pianissimi. The title song, from Dos canciones, is as good as any Twentieth-Century art song I have ever heard, both in composition and performance. Are there more Sciammarella songs in this style? They are accompanied by pianist Heather Coltman, whose ensemble with McNaron is admirable. Piezas breves para piano are ten vignettes in contrasting styles which offer Coltman free range to show delicate shimmering tone and some energetic bravura passages. Sciammarella contributes a few witty quotes from other compositional styles. Most surprising is the inclusion of an extraordinary chamber work, a piano quartet, Quarteto Credo para violín, viola, violoncelo y piano. Indicated as being from a ballet project of Sciammarella's in the 70s, the work fairly bristles with humor and dark intensity. I would love to see it danced for it fairly dances off the CD. Violinist Karen Bentley Pollick's sly rendering of the tango-like second movement is memorable. The third movement shows some influence of Stravinsky. Production: The album's notes, including English translations, are extensive and worth reading. A sharp, expressionistic cover riffs on the Campesina theme, only revealing her workworn hands, after repeated viewing. The sound quality is warm and consistent despite an indication that the entire album was not recorded by the Hoot/Wisdom label."Report Abuse