Donald Macleod explores Ponce's early career and the influence on his music of the landscape in which he grew up and the folk songs he heard as a child.
Donald Macleod explores Mexican composer Manuel Ponce's early career and the influence on his music of the landscape in which he grew up and the folk songs he heard as a child.
In a tribute shortly after Manuel Ponce's death, his great friend and collaborator the guitarist Andres Segovia said "Anyone who loves the guitar, unless he be hard-hearted and empty-headed, must revere the memory of Ponce. He lifted the guitar from the low artistic state in which it had lain. He undertook the crusade, full of eagerness to liberate the prisoner. Thanks to him, the guitar was saved from music written only by guitarists."
Ponce was also instrumental in connecting classical music with the folk tradition. He wrote "I consider it the duty of every Mexican composer to ennoble the music of his native country, giving it artistic form, dressing it with polyphonic clothing and preserving with love the popular melodies which are the expression of the natural soul." This philosophy wasn't always well-received by the Mexican musical establishment and he recalled in his early days being accused of "making music that smelled like Indian sandals." Manuel Ponce was one of Mexico's greatest composers, musical innovators and educators, yet he wore his genius lightly. His contemporaries described him as affable, intelligent and modest.
Today Donald Macleod recalls Ponce's childhood, growing up in Aguascalientes in the highlands of Central Mexico and charts the early stirrings of a nationalistic feeling in his music, inspired by Mexican art and folk traditions.
Concierto del Sur - I. Allegro moderato
Andres Segovia, guitar
Symphony of the Air
Enrique Jordá, conductor
A la orilla de un palmar
Tito Schipa, tenor
Jorge Federico Osorio, piano
Piano Trio (Trio Romantico) - II. Andante romantico & III. Scherzino - vivace
Rebeca de Vivar, singer
Luis Miranda, guitar
Orchestre La Belle Epoque
Miguel Pacheco, conductor
Estampas nocturnas - I. La Noche
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Enrique Batiz, conductor.
You are at the first episode