Concert Review: Concierto de Aranjuez by John Williams at Bbc Proms 2005

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Concierto de Aranjuez by John Williams at BBC Proms 2005 John Williams, who is known to be one of the best classical guitarists for many decades, was performing the Concierto de Aranjuez with the BBC orchestra at BBC Proms 2005. The Concierto de Aranjuez is one of the most famous pieces in guitar repertoire. It is a composition by Joaquin Rodrigo, a Spanish composer. It was written in 1939 when he was inspired by the gardens at Palacio Real de Aranjuez. Mr. Williams started out the first movement witth the rasgueado technique. After a few measures, the orchestra joined in. There are some meter changes between 6/8 and 3/4, which Mr. Williams and the orchestra could execute smoothly with great charm. Moreover, Mr. Williams also carried out the fast challenging scale with unparalleled precision – not even one mistake was heard. Although guitar is a soft-sounding instrument, with help of amplification, the balance between the orchestra and the soloist was fantastic. The second movement is a slow movement. It starts with the slow strumming chords of the guitar. After a short moment, the English horn joined the guitar with evocative charming melodic line. Later, the strings came in as an accompanying section along with the guitar playing chords. After the English horn finished the melodic solo, Mr. Williams played the melodic line, which is almost identical to that of the English horn. Mr. Williams’s solo was very melancholic, yet uplifting. Both the soloist and the orchestra were very sensitive to harmonic changes and drama during the movement. The cadenza was very impressive musically and technically. The second movement was performed with outstanding evocativeness and incomparable elegance. It ended with great sense of closure and resignation. The last movement has oddly asymmetric combination of 3/4 and 2/4 meters. It starts with the guitar playing a
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