Author Topic: Joly Braga Santos  (Read 51812 times)

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Offline kyjo

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Re: Joly Braga Santos
« Reply #400 on: May 14, 2018, 07:21:33 PM »
Recently discovered JBS' wonderful Symphonic Overture no. 3 (don't be put off by the dry title), which shares the wonderfully invigorating and melodic folk-music influences of his first four symphonies. Written in 1954, it is possibly the last of his works to be written in his accessible, tonal/modal earlier style. I also recently listened to his Cello Concerto (1987, one of his last works), which is a dark, somber work; certainly more "difficult" than his earlier music but not compared to some other music being written at the time. I found the great lyrical outburst toward the end of the work to be particularly moving - it's almost as if he's retrospectively looking back on his earlier style; after that the work dies off into bleakness.
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

Offline SymphonicAddict

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Re: Joly Braga Santos
« Reply #401 on: May 14, 2018, 07:43:57 PM »
Recently discovered JBS' wonderful Symphonic Overture no. 3 (don't be put off by the dry title), which shares the wonderfully invigorating and melodic folk-music influences of his first four symphonies. Written in 1954, it is possibly the last of his works to be written in his accessible, tonal/modal earlier style. I also recently listened to his Cello Concerto (1987, one of his last works), which is a dark, somber work; certainly more "difficult" than his earlier music but not compared to some other music being written at the time. I found the great lyrical outburst toward the end of the work to be particularly moving - it's almost as if he's retrospectively looking back on his earlier style; after that the work dies off into bleakness.

The Symphonic Overture No. 3 is wondrous indeed! I wish I could listen to the other two. As you say, it's like a synthesis of the period that spans his first 4 symphonies. A gorgeously tuneful and uplifting overture.

Offline vandermolen

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Re: Joly Braga Santos
« Reply #402 on: May 14, 2018, 10:30:33 PM »
Following this discussion I've been listening to the fine and uplifting Symphonic Overture No.3; on Naxos it's followed by the equally fine but more tragic-sounding Elegy in memory of Vianna da Motta (1948) which is another of my favourite shorter works by JBS. The somewhat dry title 'Symphonic Overture No.3' brings to mind other such works whose titles disguise the quality of the music, including Bax's 'Festival Overture' and Samuel Barber's 'Essay No.2 for Orchestra', both of which I find powerful and moving.
"Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm" (Churchill).

Offline kyjo

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Re: Joly Braga Santos
« Reply #403 on: May 16, 2018, 11:01:53 AM »
The Symphonic Overture No. 3 is wondrous indeed! I wish I could listen to the other two. As you say, it's like a synthesis of the period that spans his first 4 symphonies. A gorgeously tuneful and uplifting overture.

I also wish to hear the first two Symphonic Overtures - I hope they are recorded! Ditto his viola and piano concerti, though I believe they both belong to his later style, which I find less appealing (but still worthwhile on its own terms). I see the Viola Concerto is on YouTube.
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff

Offline kyjo

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Re: Joly Braga Santos
« Reply #404 on: May 21, 2018, 01:16:11 PM »
Just discovered the Sinfonia pirenaica by Braga Santos' Basque neighbor Jesús Guridi (1886-1961). Written in 1945, it's roughly contemporary with JBS' first four symphonies. Like the Portuguese composer in his early period, the Guridi work utilizes folk material in a colorful, energetic, and life-affirming way. It must be said that, at least on first listening, I found the work rather weak structurally, and it disappointingly lacks a true slow movement. Nonetheless, it contains some wonderful moments and I think fellow BSEs would enjoy it  ;D It's available on this Naxos recording:



https://youtu.be/-NMk5zIpEwk
"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music" - Sergei Rachmaninoff