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These are the most thrilling moments in my profession, when I have the honor to premiere a new piece. One has to be the medium, midwife and guardian angel at same time.
Mauricio Sotelo is a marvelous Spanish composer based in Berlin, who loves and understands his routes. It is unique and extremely exiting what he creates out of flamenco music and modern sounds.
He uses some of the most powerful forms of Andalusian Flamenco, such as “Soleá, Soleá por Bulería or Tangos flamencos.”
There are two cadenzas, and a fascinating moment of ecstasy of contemplating a celestial cartography, shaping a clear architectural Form of the piece.
In these very violin concerto he uses additionally to the solo violin and strings – a real flamenco-dancer and a percussionist.
The dancer represents literally the rhythm, he is possessed with it and the characters he dances are utterly precisely shaped in his movements and sound of his feet.
I never had such an animal, corporeal experience of rhythm. I felt it in all my bones, fingers and bow.
The other appeal is also to find the right sound and “micro-qualities” in the intonation for the andalusian “cant-hondo” (deep-singing in the throat) which could be experienced as a normal classical-music listener as quite shocking or “ugly” but is absolutely necessary for the right expression of this style.
After having won the “Praetorius”, a prize for innovation, some years ago in Germany, I decided to ask Mauricio to compose this violin concerto and am very honored and happy to give the premier with the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra on 10 June 2016.