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Latin American suite (duos: 2 pianos)

by John Carmichael (2000)

Score Sample

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Audio Sample

From the CD Solo flights

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Solo flights


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Solo flights / piano music by John Carmichael ; Antony Gray [piano].

Library shelf no. CD 1818 [Available for loan]

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Work Overview

John Carmichael spent several years as musical director of a Spanish dance company during which time his innate love of Spanish and Latin American music and dance forms deepened further. The first result was the Concierto Folklorico for piano & orchestra, but works continue to appear using the rhythms, harmonic idiom and characteristics of Spanish and Latin American music.
In the Latin American Suite, the rhumba and the habanera are well known dance forms, but the joropo less so; there are two theories about it’s characteristic cross rhythm between 6/8 and 3/4 time - one is that the Viennese waltz became very popular, but the rhythmic genius of Latin dancers spiced the three in a bar rhythm of the waltz with a six in the bar flavour. The other explanation is that the joropo rhythm imitates the galloping of the horses which are famous for their speed and grace in the area between Venezuela and Colombia.
The Jongo came to Latin America via the slave trade from Africa; it has an obsessive beat and it’s highly syncopated melody rises from a hushed beginning to an orgiastic climax.

Work Details

Year: 2000

Instrumentation: Piano duet - piano four hands or 2 pianos.

Duration: 15 min.

Difficulty: Advanced — Tertiary student/professional.

Contents note: 1. Bahama rumba -- 2. Obsession - Habañera -- 3. Joropo -- 4. Jongo.

First performance: by Sofia Cabruja, Carlos Lama — 12 May 01. Conservatorio Concert Hall, Girona, Spain


Performances of this work

6 Nov 2011: at Lyrebird Music Society Concert (Wyselaskie Auditorium). Featuring Robert Weatherburn, Jeffrey Grice.

12 May 01: Conservatorio Concert Hall, Girona, Spain. Featuring Sofia Cabruja, Carlos Lama.

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