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CD Feature/ Floraleda Sacchi & Claudio Ferrarini: "Suite en duo"

img  Tobias

There is an interesting cross-over going on here with the previous release of this flute/harp duo. For “Krumpholtz”, Floraleda Sacchi and Claudio Ferrarini posed in up-to-date outfits on a barren industrial compound and recorded truly “Classical” music with the aesthetics of the 21st century. For “Suite en duo”, meanwhile, they have taken the posh suits from the racks and reverted to an infinitely reverbed cathedral sound – while presenting a program with a heavy bias towards modern times.

You will by now have guessed that contrasts and juxtapositions are among the favourites of these two instrumentalists. Which does not make them unique in a world which sees more and more Classical musicians embrace the Avantgarde as well as specially commissioned new works in a bid to save composing as a profession and win over young audiences. The difference, though, is that Sacchi and Ferrarini are neither opportunists nor conservative traditionalists desperately trying to be hip – they truly love a variety of contemporary styles and are knowledgeable far beyond the realms of where their instrments would usually venture inside the prestigious opera halls and theaters. It is therefore hardly a shock to find Erik Satie next to Philip Glass here and Ravi Shankar (!) alongside Astor Piazzolla – after all, some of Floraleda’s past solo releases can actually be considered even more adventurous than this collection: With its fresh mix of World Music, South American influences, Minimal Music and Impressionism, “Suite en duo” is one of the albums that brings together music fans of all colours, creeds and generations. Glass’ “Open the Kingdom” (in a world premiere recording in this arrangement) is a fine combination of his fluent melodic lines and mystic sonoroties with an extremely catchy opening theme, Jean Cras’ and Nino Rota’s suites and sonatas paint airy dabbers of breath and touch on the canvas of the blue sky and Shankar’s “Enchanted Dawn” is a twelve-minute concentrate of an Indian raga. “Histoire du Tango”, meanwhile, has by now turned up on a stunning amount of releases I have listened to over the last few months and Sacchi’s and Ferrarini’s interpretation is by far the most “Classical” one (when, for example, compared to the moody and folk-tinged violin-version of maelasta) – thereby making the point that Piazzolla should not just be regarded as an exotic encore to Mozart and Beethoven, but a maestro in his own right.

Just as much as it is fun and stimulating to listen to the music, Floraleda’s liner notes are written with the voice of someone who knows about the information needs of a traditional public and the personal details which constitute the so-called “pop appeal”. Maybe something like that could not have been expected from an album with a cover like this one. But as we already mentioned, contrasts have always been part of the duo’s portfolio.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: Floraleda Sacchi
Homepage: Claudio Ferrarini
Homepage: Universal Classics/Decca

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