Surrounded by plants, the chirping of birds in the background and the tranquility of the charming hotel Masía La Mota. Ideal scenario to talk and get carried away by words, as we have done with Marisa Blanes, “a girl from Alcoy researcher and pianist”.
Several notes we have played with her: her career in front of the piano, the musical research, the ambitions, the special energy of her and her sisters … All this in a kind conversation in which we could not resist and we have accompanied her with her music background in the video.
“We are very mentally restless,” he confessed during the most intimate part of the interview when talking about his sisters, Carolina and Georgina Blanes, who left us in 2015. With humility, he commented that although it could be a reference to the piano nationwide , “that is not the most important”. The authors Alcoyanos Luis Blanes, Carlos Palacio and Amando Blanquer, with snacks in the house of the latter, have not been lacking in conversation. We do not reveal more, because if every musical work needs to be listened to from beginning to end, this interview deserves to be seen as well.
The alcoyan pianist has presented a book about Carlos Palacio. Marisa Blanes is one of the most solid values of the Spanish piano. In addition to his important concert work, Blanes stands out for his investigative side, especially of the alcoyans Amado Blanquer, Luis Blanes and Carlos Palacio .
The Ibs Classical label has just published an excellent album with the 24 Preludes and Fugas Op. 87 by Dimitri Shostakovich, in its integral version, interpreted by the pianist and Doctor of Music from the Polytechnic University of Valencia, Marisa Blanes. 3 discs that we strongly recommend to music lovers.
MARISA BLANES: 24 PRELUDES AND LEAKS OP. 87 FROM SHOSTAKOVICH
The careful and well documented booklet that accompanies the 3 albums that make up this album, by the way, one of the features that we always find on the discs of the Ibs Classical label, and as a presentation of the work, we want to highlight here the following notes:
“The tonality abolished or the tonality diluted, such was the dilemma that conditioned the musical creation of the twentieth century. Dimitri Shostakovich bequeathed us a document of high musical and historical value: the 24 preludes and fugues opus 87, written for piano in homage to Johann Sebastian Bach between 1950 and 1951, opting for evolution and not for the crossroads of the rupture. Without renouncing his aesthetic creeds, Shostakovich proposes a speech of singular actuality in which tonality and modality are not produced as antinomies but as agglutinants of a renewed discourse from the paradigms of historical reason to the new hypotheses of a musical language of free expression”. (…)
“Many are the elements that underpin the course of these 24 Preludes and Fugues op.87, some structural, others formal and others of a logical or dynamic nature, each of them being components of a discourse that must be interpreted as a dramatic unit and dialectic coherent in itself and not as a series of pedagogical exercises “(…)
Before such a conceptual statement of the work, and how it should be interpreted, it is evident the difficulty of the company that Marisa Blanes has faced. And I have to say that the result seems extraordinary and, above all, moving.
Following the motivation inspired by the above notes, I decided to make a comprehensive, attentive, and profound listening. A sound trip full of wonderful “landscapes” that follow each other without solution of continuity but, as I am very well told above, they are configuring that dramatic and dialectical unit that, little by little, is shown to us as indisputable. But while this is true, it is clear, too, that it requires an interpretation that is capable of maintaining the unity required. An obligation that translates into a deep knowledge of the work, an extraordinary sensitivity capable of showing the innumerable nuances that Shostakovich proposes to us and, above all, a piano technique that is capable of not causing us to lose concentration for the necessary deep listening and avoiding that we fall into the sensation that we are before the also commented pedagogical exercises unrelated and independent.
Well, after listening to Marisa Blanes, I have to affirm that we are facing a memorable interpretation that opens new paths for the enjoyment of music in general and the music of Shostakovich in particular. To paraphrase Fray Luís de León in his praise of the music of Salinas, and allow himself to change hands by hand, we can say that listening to this album:
The air is serene, and you see beauty and unused light, Marisa, when the extreme music sounds, for your wise hands governed
“The tonality does not have to be abolished, it can be transcended”
The pianist Marisa Blanes and the actor Manuel Galiana premiered six melólogos of current composers with texts of Santa Teresa de Jesús.
EXTRACT OF THE INTERVIEW CARRIED OUT BY THE JOURNALIST PABLO J. VAYÓN PUBLISHED IN THE DIARY OF SEVILLE THE PAST OCTOBER 12
MELÓLOGOS EN HONOR DE SANTA TERESA. Marisa Blanes, piano; Manuel Galiana, recitador. Iberia Classical (Sémele)
The activities surrounding the V Centenary of the birth of Saint Teresa of Jesus, which culminate next Thursday, the 15th, date dedicated to the santoral to this universal, have had the characteristic institutional profile that the great cultural ephemerides in Spain have known for decades. , but that has not limited private contributions. The Directorate General of Politics and Cultural Industries and the Book of the Ministry of Culture organized a series of concerts around the figure of the saint in which was presented last June the project that includes this record from the Granada label Iberia. In it the pianist Marisa Blanes and the actor Manuel Galiana have recorded six works of current composers written from texts of Santa Teresa. The original of the proposal is the recourse to the genre of the melologist, a derivative of the melodrama in which the texts are recited and not sung. For Marisa Blanes it was the ideal way “to include in the project Manuel Galiana, a friend of many years, Manolo is not only a great actor, but someone who enjoys reciting poetry a lot, with him he had already premiered other works”
– How did the idea of dedicating these melólogos to Santa Teresa arise?
-It was the idea of a group of Spanish composers who joined the company Sonic Links, which is the company I have with my husband, Luciano González Sarmiento. Tomás Marco, Carlos Cruz de Castro and José Luis Turina have been friends of ours for a long time, and among all of us we were thinking about this project, which has become increasingly exciting. To all three we add the name of Francisco Novel Sámano, a Cantabrian composer of a more recent generation, and, trying to expand the reach to South America, we also incorporate the Venezuelan Alfredo Rugeles, who is very close to Tomás, and the Mexican Eduardo Soto Millán .
-When does the possibility arise of taking this work to the album and why on the Iberia label?
-From the beginning we thought that it was important to be able to leave testimony of this project, but the certain thing is that to find us with Iberia was a chance and a luck of the life. We were looking for a producer and a record company to publish my work on Shostakovich when we met Paco Moya, the producer of Iberia. He knew my husband a lot, because Luciano was the founding pianist of the Mompou Trio, and everything was phenomenal from the beginning, almost a crush.
– Why contemporary music to honor a mystic of the sixteenth century?
-Contemporary music is as exciting as classical music can be, it has the same parameters of originality and expressiveness. It is true that the usual in these cases is to make music from the time of the honorees, but offer the vision that today’s composers have a great classic I also find an inexcusable task.
-In your opinion, at what point is the Spanish composition?
-In a great moment. We have a generation of magnificent young composers, extraordinarily prepared. In the world of Spanish composition there was a blip after the Civil War, but fortunately that is a stage overcome. Today we have many musicians doing very different things. One of the aspects that I see with more interest is that of a kind of return to tonality. I see it very well. The tonality does not have to be abolished, it can be transcended. Experimentation is important, but to move forward, it is not necessary to liquidate everything behind it. The return of tonality is like a return home.
-Iberia will also publish shortly his recording of a fundamental work of the twentieth century, the 24 Preludes and Fugues by Dmitri Shostakovich. What does this work mean to you?
-I fell in love with this play when I heard it from Tatiana Nikolaieva in Cologne, where I was studying. She went to give a master’s degree, she played it whole and it absolutely impressed me. It is a work of a great internal variety, with a lot of modality, with those typical Shostakovich melodies, which seems to come from the Cossacks … And I realized that you do not play too much. It was four or five years of intense study until I recorded it three years ago. Paco has done an extraordinary remastering job and it will come out very soon. I have done the complete cycle like 7 or 8 times and now I will return to it. It is wonderful. Going back to Shostakovich is for me like going back to meet someone from my family.
Diario de Sevilla, October 12, 2015 – Pablo J. Vayón
The pianist Marisa Blanes demonstrated her qualities as a solid pianist and also as a great chamber music maker, throughout this ambitious cycle devoted to the ten sonatas for violin and piano by Beethoven, together with the Bulgarian violinist based in Vienna,Mario Hossen.Ten masterpieces distributed in three concerts that were packed and culminated with a sensational success before the masterful final interpretation of that sonata so characteristic as to inspire a novel to Tolstoy: the Sonata a Kreutzer. There is no doubt that we are facing a great figure of international expansion. Mario Hossen is a huge violinist and it was a brilliant idea to join him with Marisa Blanes, because what could have been a brilliant violin exhibition turned into first class chamber music.
Symphony Orchestra of Valencia. Director: Enrique García Asensio
In the brief Concert of Xavier Montsalvatge, the pianist Marisa Blanes showed great solidity and musicality, interpreting with refined sensitivity her participation in the orchestral framework; great ravelian dialogues, expressive phrases with the English horn, and moments of closeness to jazz. To his effective romantic gesture in the cadence, he added a beautiful pianistic sound and color ….
In these days when the identity of Spanish is so awkwardly questioned, the audition of this album gives a lot to think about with its fascinating journey through tango and habanera, those two dances that merge and interweave each other and extend their thousands arms throughout the Pan-Hispanic world. Albéniz, Falla, Turina, Esplá, Ernesto Halfter, Vicente Asencio, Manuel Palau, Antoni Torrandell, Montsalvatge, Ángeles López Artiga, Leonora Milá, José Luis Turina, Tomás Marco and Carlos Cruz de Castro, are the stopovers of a trip in whichCatalonia seems-for God’s sake! -to have something to do with it.Marisa Blanes is the splendid protagonist of this album.His fingers shed with “angel” and gallantry the lazy and indolent grace of these airs that, in their seductive and sinuous elegance, enclose a whole way of being and being in the world.
ABC, 28 de agosto de 2013 – Álvaro Marías
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