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Aranjuez (Thibaut Garcia)

Thibaut Garcia (guitar); Orchestre National di Capitole de Toulouse/Ben Glassberg (Erato)

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

Rodrigo: Concierto de Aranjuez; Sainz de la Maza: Sacrificio; Zapateado; Rondena; El Vito;
Tansman: Musique de cour (d’après Robert de Visée); Robert de Visée: Suite in A minor
Thibaut Garcia (guitar); Orchestre National di Capitole de Toulouse/Ben Glassberg
Erato 9029523570   64:02 mins

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Guitarist Thibaut Garcia’s third solo album is centred on this bright and driven Concierto de Aranjuez, played with a clarity that manages to achieve the shock of the new despite being the world’s best known concerto for his instrument. Garcia’s great attentiveness to tone and expression marks this out, almost wilfully sprightly in the opening Allegro con spirito. It is the Adagiowhich is the eye-opener, however, full of ornament, an expressive vocal mourning played almost as if improvising, not least the cadenza. With the closing Allegro gentile, Garcia emphasises the dance-like rhythms of Rodrigo’s piece, the stresses, as if meticulously deconstructing the score, cleaning it up and putting it back together again. Ben Glassberg and the Orchestra National du Capitole de Toulouse are thoroughly committed in return.

The rest of the recording segues from the lovely fragments by Spanish guitarist and composer Regino Sainz de la Maza (1896-1981) to Alexandre Tansman’s Musique de cour, a reinvention of the Baroque music of Robert de Visée, and then the real deal, Robert de Visée’s Suite in A minor. The richly detailed Tansman (1960) is Baroque reinvented with the gloss of costume drama and full orchestral support. De Visée’s own fragments seem appropriately to pull us back into an earlier time, the orchestra abandoned, leaving simply Garcia and his thoughtfully articulated guitar.

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Sarah Urwin Jones