Guitar Romance is a unique and important recording. Unique in that the
repertoire is varied, i.e. ranging from the classical music of John Williams, Ennio Morricone
and Bill Conte, amongst others. It is important because it's varied content allows it to reach
a wider audience than a standard classical album.
The music is presented in such a way as
to show the guitar in its original form, i.e. the Sojo and Ponce pieces along with solo
arrangements of Grainger, Bach, Falla, Schumann and Granados. Other solos include first
recorded arrangements by Loewe (On the Street Where You Live) and John
Williams (Theme from Schindler's List).
Overdubbed duets (both parts played by Jason Waldron) including
Forrest Gump Theme, John Dunbar Theme,
Intermezzo from Cavalleria Rusticana, and the Theme from
Rocky (duet with guitarist, arranger David Boddington) provide a rich and
full-textured sound. The ensembles are uniquely arranged so as to show the versatility and
sustaining quality of the guitar in such pieces as The Swan and
Gymnopedie No. 1 where the guitar plays the solo line normally associated with
a flute, cello etc., or in the Polovtsian Dance, where one could imagine the
guitar melody line normally taken by a broader melodic instrument, such as a clarinet or
The versatility of the guitar is best summed up in the 18th
Variation on a Theme of Paganini, where the guitar takes the part normally played by
piano, albeit in a different key. Guitar Romance is recorded using several
guitars by the great Spanish maker, Ignacio Fleta and the associated musicians are members of
the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra.
About the Fleta guitars used on this
The modem concert guitar has evolved from various plucked instruments of many cultures over
hundreds of years. This long history culminated in nineteenth century Spain through the genius
of Antonio de Torres (1817-1892) who finally established the shape and structural design of the
present day guitar. It is a testimony to Torres that some of the finest guitars built today are
direct copies of instruments he made over one hundred years ago.
One maker who used Torres as inspiration was the great Barcelona Luthier, Ignacio Fleta
(1897-1977). Fleta was an established violin, cello and guitar maker who, after hearing the
great Andres Segovia in the 1950s, decided to concentrate almost entirely on the construction
of concert guitars. Segovia and several other concert artists started using Fletas and soon his
name was established alongside those of Hauser, Bouchet and Hernandez y Aguado as one of the
greatest makers of the modern era.
Ignacio Fleta has been described as the 'Stradivarius of the guitar'. This description is
particularly apt as Fleta borrowed many constructional ideas form his violin making background
such as the arm to body dovetail joint, a radical departure from the 'Spanish' method of
building the arm and body as one unit during construction. This, together with inspirational
ideas for internal strutting and top thicknessing, proved instrumental in achieving the
distinct Fleta sound.
In the mid 1960s Fleta, along with several other makers, began to substitute the traditional
European spruce soundboard for that of American cedar, and this recording demonstrates both
spruce guitars (from 1961 and 1962) and cedar (from 1972).
The 1961 and 1972 guitars, previously used by John Williams for concert and recording work,
represent the zenith of these major periods of Fleta's work and are two of the finest concert
guitars ever made.
Still being constructed in Barcelona by his sons Francisco and Gabriel, Fleta guitars, like
Stardivarius violins and Steinway pianos, continue to be one of the first choices for concert
and recording artists to this day.
Ignacio Fleta best described the exquisite sound of his guitars when he expressed that it was
his aim to give the guitar a 'human' voice - a philosophy surely attained and to be enjoyed now
and for generations to come.
Which guitars were used on which
1961 Fleta guitar: 2, 4, 6, 8, 9, 11, 18, 22, 23
1962 Fleta guitar: 8, 21
1968 Fleta guitar: 22
1972 Fleta guitar: 1, 3, 5, 7, 10, 11, 13, 19, 20
Find out more: 1961 and 1972 Fleta
Jason Waldron - guitar (and second
guitar 8, 11, 13)
Michael Milton, Margaret Blades, Danielle Jaquillard, Hilary Bruer-Jones -
Juris Ezergailis - viola
Jacqueline Curiel - cello
Hong Bing Zhang - double
Carolyn Burgess - harp
Elizabeth Hennessy - flute
Glenn Madden - trumpet
John Drake -
Sal Bonavita - Flamenco guitar
David Boddington - guitar, track 22
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