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Scelsi: Music for Cello Solo / Simonacci

Release Date: 12/01/2017 
Label:  Brilliant Classics   Catalog #: 95355  
Composer:  Giacinto Scelsi
Performer:  Marco Simonacci
Number of Discs: 1 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews

An aristocratic background, Eastern philosophies, private study with Modernist luminaries of the early 20th century and a determined pursuit of solitude: all in their ways contribute to the unique soundworld of Giacinto Scelsi’s music. Despite shunning personal publicity, however, the composer surrounded himself with friends and favorite performers, among them the American-born, Dutch cellist Frances-Marie Uitti who came to represent Scelsi on the world stage in his latter years. To her care he entrusted Trilogy, which forms the main work on this album of solo cello music. Comprising Triphon, Dithome and the Sanskritinspired Ygghur, the Trilogy is still to some extent dependent on the Expressionist language he had learnt from disciples of Read more Schoenbergian serialism, yet already personal to him, and now a classic of 20th-century solo cello repertoire. The album is completed by the two fleeting movements of Voyages from 1974, which deploy disembodied harmonics and other techniques familiar from Scelsi’s music. Read less

Works on This Recording

Trilogia (Die drei Lebensalter des Menschen), for solo cello by Giacinto Scelsi
Performer:  Marco Simonacci (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1957-1965 
Voyages by Giacinto Scelsi
Performer:  Marco Simonacci (Cello)
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1974 

Customer Reviews

Average Customer Review:  1 Customer Review )
 The Strange Cello Music of Giacinto Scelsi December 23, 2017 By Art Music Lady See All My Reviews "The Three Stages of Man are youth-energy-drama (three movements), maturity-thought (one long movement) and a final catharsis (three movements). The last section of the first “stage” is quite busy and edgy-sounding, with jagged musical lines and, later, high-range sustained notes. In the middle section (titled “Dithome”), Scelsi works at first within a very small range of tones, focusing rather on a “wavering” and distorted sound. At about the five-minute mark, however, the music becomes increasingly busy and agitated, perhaps representing a flood of competing thoughts in the mind. Later on, after some repeated tenuto notes, we hear the cellist playing odd chorded figures, followed by more unusual pitch distortions within rapid passages. Muvh of the first piece in the third section, titled “Igghur: Alter,” consists for the most part of these wavering tones in a sequence where the underlying rhythm is constantly in flux. The strange “buzzing” sound in the second piece, “Igghur: Erinnerung,” is a constant feature, around which the cellist apparently taps the body of his or her instrument as it goes along. The two-movement Voyages, dating from 1974, uses similar techniques such as disembodied harmonies and his patented slow, microtonal glissandi. This is especially apparent in the second movement, which almost sounds like someone playing Indian music on a sitar, with its quick wavers played like fluttering tones. Although it’s always difficult to say how much such feelings can be conveyed in music, if one knows these associations it is not difficult to hear them in the playing of Marco Simonacci. His astounding technique and full tone give these works, originally written for Scelsi’s good friend Frances-Marie Uitti, their full measure of both emotional and musical values. Scelsi did not “develop” his music along conventional classical lines, but rather used a continually changing timbre and density of sound to make his points. Thus the average classical aficionado will undoubtedly feel lost listening to these works, but I urge you to give them a try. They may not be to your taste, but they will certainly open up your mind if you give them half a chance. --Lynn Rene Bayley, The Art Music Lounge" Report Abuse
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