This French composer’s latest oeuvre is in four movements and is set for two guitars (to be amplified), a string quartet and a double bass.
It begins with a very short largo introduction that acquaints us with the melodic cell that the whole of the rest of the piece is based upon. Here it is first introduced on the cello with shimmering guitars thrumming open D chords. After these eight bars the next movement entitled Promenade is in triple time (as are all the rest of the movements). It begins with a jaunty idea atop pizzicato strings that at bar eight take over the idea themselves. This swapping of the main idea continues for a while until a gradual gathering’ of momentum in the guitar parts brings back the introductory largo from the 1st movement this time on the guitars that leads directly to the 3rd movement a valse lente. Here the motto theme is instantly evident on the guitars that solo for a while until bar 21 when the strings take over this melody. This situation carries on for a brief time until a sudden vivo followed by a pause that leads us straight into the valse finale. To the accompaniment of the guitars the violins present us yet again with the main motto theme, this time however with much more swing and excitement. A brief solo on guitar one leads us back into the opening idea and then to a meno mosso that begins with the 2nd guitar playing a theme that, being in two, crosses the bar lines. This takes us then to a con calma idea marked “Alla Wes Montgomery”, before the opening themes return for one last time and then take us to a brief but satisfying coda,
At 12 minutes in length this item is quite substantial but not so hard to put off any relative amateurs from having a go. The music itself is melodic and the parts are only moderately hard for all. So, if you have a couple of guitarists and a few string player friends, this might be right for you. Any schools or colleges with the necessary musicians would have a great time getting involved with this fine piece.
Chris Dumigan (Classical Guitar Magazine)