Notes and Editorial Reviews
Also available on Blu-ray
The Spanish flamenco dancer and choreographer Antonio Gades played a prominent role in popularising his art form throughout the world. His most notable works included dance adaptations of Prosper Merimée's
Carmen and Federico García Lorca's
Blood Wedding (
Bodas de Sangre). There’s also a feature-length adaptation of Manuel de Falla's 23-minute ballet
El Amor Brujo.
is based on the play by the Spanish playwright, Lope de Vega (1562-1635), first published in 1619.
This is based upon an historical incident that took place in the village of Fuenteovejuna under the command of the tyrant Fernán Gómez de Guzmán - “a monster drunk on arrogance and lust”. His violence and abuse, and insistence of his rights of
droit de seigneur - the supposed right of a feudal lord to have sexual intercourse with the bride or daughter of an inferior on the night of her wedding - caused the women of the village to instigate a revolt in which Guzmán was killed.
The music is a mix of classical and folk. The former represents Authority in the personages of Guzmán and his men. For the commander’s wardrobe scene the Mussorgsky-Ravel ‘Catacombs’ from
Pictures at an Exhibition is used. In places we hear 16
th century war trumpet music. Folk music also plays its part in the villagers’ dances: jotas, boleros and flamencos. Of these latter, for the women’s imaginatively choreographed washing-in-the-river scene, a popular Andalusian song is used. Other highlights include the men’s bullfighting game and the women’s wedding dances. This ballet is very much a matter of ensemble dance with just a few solos and
pas de deux. Joaquín Mulero makes a formidable and menacing Guzmán, while Cristina Carnero is an appealing feisty Laurencia, lusted after and raped by Guzmán. Ángel Gil is Laurencia’s proud and heroic fiancé.
Sets and props are minimal; atmosphere and dram conveyed by clever lighting. Costume colours are muted browns, grey and pinks. The village women’s dresses are all full length. There is a little dialogue and a few songs. It is a great pity, therefore, that the subtitles were restricted to the excellent documentary ‘About
An involving story line with tremendously vigorous dancing.
-- Ian Lace, MusicWeb International
Director: Stella Arazu
Composers: Anton Garcia Abril, Modest Mussorgsky, Antonio Gades, Faustino Nunez, Joan Antonio Zafra
Featuring: Cristina Carnero, Angel Gil, Joaquin Mulero, Alberto Ferrero
Subtitles: English, Spanish, French, Italian, German
Audio Format: LPCM, DTS 5.1
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Works on This Recording
Fuenteovejuna by Anton Garcia Abril
Madrid Teatro Real Orchestra
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