Pacho Flores, Ximo Vicedo and the Orquesta Sinfónica RTVE will premiere Un Sueño Morisco, double concerto for trumpet, trombone and orchestra by Christian Lindberg, next 21 and 22 March at Teatro Monumental in Madrid. Pacho Flores and Christian Lindberg, who will also conduct on this occasion, have a long history of collaborations, being the most recent the recording of FRACTALES, Pacho Flores’ latest album for Deutsche Grammophon with the Arctic Philharmonic, with a European tour that went through Bodø and Tromsø in Norway, the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam and ended at the ADDA in Alicante. FRACTALES includes Lindberg’s concert Akban Bunka, among other works.
In Lindberg’s words about Un Sueño Morisco: “I took this opportunity to really challenge the soloists. Both the trumpet part and the trombone part are extremely virtuosic. When I saw the trombone part, I thought: ‘My God, this is even going to be hard for me to play!’ It takes a lot of practice. And the trumpet part… Of course Pacho can do anything, so I challenged him really well. But it’s also a piece that has the Spanish soul. I’ve always loved going to Spain to give concerts there, and I also have many memories from the time I was on holiday in Seville, Cordoba, Granada, when I visited the Alhambra. There is an exotic flavour in all these landscapes… And I think I included part of that in this piece.”
Christian Lindberg is one of the six composers engaged in the project of shared commissions that Pacho Flores is carrying out by commissioning new concerts for trumpet and orchestra. The premiere will take place in Stockholm in September 2021. As part of this project, Concierto de otoño by Arturo Márquez has already been premiered in Mexico (Orquesta Nacional, Carlos Miguel Prieto) and the US (Tucson Symphony, José Luis Gómez), it will continue in Japan next May (Hyogo Pac Orchestra, Michiyoshi Inoue) and finish in August with the European premiere by Oviedo Filarmonía under Lucas Macías. Next premiere tours include composers Paquito D’Rivera, Roberto Sierra, Efraín Oscher and Daniel Freiberg.
On the occasion of the presentation of FRACTALES, his most recent recording for Deutsche Grammophon together with the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra and Christian Lindberg, Pacho Flores begins an international tour that will take him to venues in Norway, Holland and Spain, where he will offer various works from the album, such as the Haydn and Arutunian concertos and Akban Bunka by Christian Lindberg. Fractales may be purchased, listened to and downloaded here.
On 7 and 8 November at the Kulturhuset in Tromso and the Stormen Hall in Bodø, the two Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra venues, he will play the Haydn and Aruturnian concertos; on 11 November at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam will perform the Haydn concert and on 14 November at the Auditorio de la Diputación de Alicante, where the Israel NK Orchestra will replace the Arctic, he will play Akban Bunka by Christian Lindberg.
In December Pacho will be travelling between Asia and Finland to offer a series of concerts with the Singapore National Youth Orchestra at the Esplanade Concert Hall in Singapore conducted by Peter Stark on the 6th; and at the Xinghai Concert Hall in Guangzhou (China) and the Hong Kong Culture Centre Concert Hall conducted by Joshua Tan on the 23rd and 26th. In these concerts Pacho will play Arutunian’s Concerto. In between, on December 12th and 13th, Pacho will play Piazzolla’s Oblivion and Invierno Porteño together with the Haydn concerto with the Kymi Sinfonietta and Olari Elts in the Finnish towns of Kotka and Kouvola.
The new year will take Pacho to the Dutch towns of Zutphen, Arnhem and Nijtmegen to offer, along with the Het Gelders Orchestra and Christian Vásquez, an intense programme consisting of Villalobos’ Aria de la Bachiana nº 5, Christian Lindberg’s Akban Bunka, the absolute premiere of Daniel Freiberg’s Crónicas Latinoamericanas in its version for trumpet and to finish a samba by Pacho himself entitled Labios Vermelhos. These performances will take place on January 4, 5 and 6, before he leaves for the U.S., where on January 25 and 27 he will play with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and Jose Luis Gomez, the U.S. premiere of Arturo Marquez’s Concerto, the result of the shared commissions project that Pacho is involved with. This concert premiered last September with the National Orchestra of Mexico and its Japanese and Spanish premieres are already scheduled, with the Hyogo PAC Orchestra and Michiyoshi Inoue and the Oviedo Filarmonía and Lucas Macías in May and August respectively. (Translation: John Eastham)
Pacho Flores, together with Christian Lindberg and the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra, presents his new Deutsche Grammophon recording FRACTALES. Recorded last May at the Stormen Hall in Bodo, one of the Norwegian orchestra’s headquarters, FRACTALES includes trumpet masterpieces such as Haydn and Arutunian concertos, the astonishing contemporary composition Akban Bunka by Christian Lindberg and some of the key works in Pacho’s repertoire such as his own transcription of Sarasate’s Gypsy Airs and Efraín Oscher’s arrangements of Tom Jobim’s Chega de Saudade and Piazzolla’s Oblivion.
FRACTALES is Pacho’s third recording for Deutsche Grammophon following CANTAR, recorded with the Berlin Funkhausorchester and Christian Vásquez and ENTROPÍA, with guitarist Jesús ‘Pingüino’ González. Some of the works included in this recording will be played in the tour presentation concerts in Bodo and Tromso, Norway (Haydn and Arutunian), the Amsterdam Concertgebouw (Haydn) and the ADDA Auditorium in Alicante, Spain (Lindberg).
As well as professional partners, Pacho and Christian are very good friends and FRACTALES is not their only project together. Christian, trombonist, composer and conductor, is writing a new Double Concerto for trumpet and trombone that will be premiered on March 21 and 22, 2019, with Christian conducting the Spanish Radio and Television Orchestra and Ximo Vicedo on trombone. He is also collaborating with Pacho in his Project of Shared Commissions of New Trumpet Concertos.
With regard to this project, Arturo Márquez’s Concierto de Otoño has already been premiered by the National Orchestra of Mexico and Carlos Miguel Prieto and further premieres are planned with the Tucson Symphony Orchestra and José Luis Gómez in the USA, with the Hyogo PAC Orchestra and Michiyoshi Inoue in Japan and with the Oviedo Filarmonía and Lucas Macías in Spain. New concertos by Roberto Sierra, Paquito D’Rivera, Efraín Oscher and Christian Lindberg will be premiered in the coming seasons. Following FRACTALES, Pacho is already working on new recording projects.
On September the 7th and 9th, Pacho Flores will play the first of four premieres of Arturo Marquez‘s new Concierto de Otoñofor trumpet and orchestra, with the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico and its Chief Conductor Carlos Miguel Prieto at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico D. F. This premiere is the result of a shared commission between the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, the Tucson Symphony Orchestra, the Hyogo PAC Orchestra (Japan) and the Oviedo Filarmonía (Spain).
The four premieres will take place as follows:
September, 7/9, 2018 – National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico, conductor, Carlos Miguel Prieto, Palacio de Bellas Artes, Mexico DF
January, 25/27, 2019 – Tucson Symphony Orchestra, conductor, José Luis Gómez, Tucson Music Hall
May, 24/25/26, 2019 – Hyogo PAC Orchestra (Japan), conductor, Michiyoshi Inoue; Hyogo Performing Arts center
Arturo Márquez (Álamos, Sonora, 1950) is without discussion the most important Mexican composer alive. He wrote masterpieces such as Danzón nº2 (1994) or Conga del Fuego (2005), which gave him international relevance. He joins a distinguished lineage of Mexican composers like Silvestre Revueltas or Carlos Chávez, who based their music on the traditions and genres of Mexican popular music. Maestro Márquez was given the Prize of the Fine Arts by the Mexican Government in 2009.
The Concierto de Otoño (Autumn Concerto) is 16 minutes long and was composed between January – June of 2018. It has three movements: Son de luz, Balada de floripondios and Conga de Flores, and requires the use of four trumpets: trumpet in C in the first; flugelhorn and Hornet in F in the second; and trumpet in D in the third. Even before its first premiere, several orchestras have already shown interest in programming the piece once the four premieres would be done by each of the four commissioning orchestras.
Pacho Flores. Project of shared commissions
This premiere is the first of an ambitious project by Pacho Flores to create shared commissions spanning across several seasons that extend the repertoire of solo trumpet and orchestra. In addition to Arturo Márquez, four prominent composers such as Roberto Sierra, Paquito D’Rivera, Efraín Oscher and Christian Lindberg, have joined Pacho in this project.
Left to right and top to bottom: Arturo Márquez, Roberto Sierra, Paquito D’Rivera, Efraín OScher and Christian Lindberg
Orchestras from all around the world (Puerto Rico, Brazil, Mexico, United States, Japan, United Kingdom, Sweden, Spain…) are joining this project, which, at its end, will have reunited twenty orchestras and thus, the same number of premieres. Besides leading this project, Pacho Flores is also premiering new trumpet concertos and beginning a career as a composer. Between his last and next premieres we can mention:
Pacho Flores: Cantos y revueltas (11/12/13 January 2018, Real Filharmonía de Galicia, Manuel Hernández-Silva)
Giancarlo Castro: Trumpet concerto(23 February 2018, Ulster Orchestra, Rafael Payare).
Alain Trudel: Preach, pour trompette et orchestre (14 March 2018, Orch. Symphonique de Laval, Alain Trudel)
Efraín Oscher: Apex, double concerto for clarinet and trumpet (29 August 2018, Matthias Schorn, Norddeutsche Philharmonie Rostock, Marcus Bosch)
Daniel Freiberg: Latin American Chronicles Concerto (4/5/6 January 2019, Het Gelders Orkest, Christian Vásquez)
Christian Lindberg: Double concerto for trumpet and trombone (21/22 March 2019, Orquesta de RTVE, Christian Lindberg; Ximo Vicedo, trombone).
Before the concert began, ITG President Cathy Leach presented the Guild’s most prestigious award, the ITG Honorary Award, to Marie Speziale, who accepted the honor with a gracious speech. Conference Director Jean-Christophe Dobrzelewski then introduced Pacho Flores and explained that the program was structured to progress from the Baroque era to the present and that Flores would be using a wide variety of Stomvi instruments displayed on a table on the left side of the stage.
Accompanied by the ITG Festival Orchestra, Flores conducted while performing, standing in the center of the strings. When he wasn’t playing, he turned around to face the orchestra and conduct in the usual manner. Most of the time, however, he led as a chamber musician, nodding and dancing to the beat while facing the audience, often directing with his right hand while continuing to play the trumpet. And did he ever play! Flores possesses a rare ability to perform absolutely anything in any style and on any horn (piccolo through flugelhorn and corno da caccia)—from memory, while conducting—with effortless mastery and peerless artistry. Pacho Flores embodies a level of virtuosity that borders on the supernatural.
The program began with Efrain Oscher’s arrangement of Daquin’s Le Coucou with Pacho dazzling the audience on piccolo trumpet through a flurry of spinning sixteenth notes tossed off with impeccable élan. Switching to a corno da caccia (similar to a valved posthorn), he gave an unforgettable performance of the Neruda concerto. Replete with understated elegance, inventive cadenzas, and tasteful ornamentation, Flores entranced the audience with the seductive dark sound of the instrument.
Pacho introduced the next piece, Oscher’s Barroqueana Venezolana 2, by referring to his “little arsenal by Stomvi” as he moved three of the instruments to a padded piano bench next to him by the cello section. Written for Flores and designed to “combine Baroque music with Venezuelan elements,” the three movements featured playful piccolo pyrotechnics, a seductive serenade showcasing the low register of the four-valve Stomvi Titan flugelhorn, and a mixed-meter dance reminiscent of neoclassical Stravinsky. Flores returned to piccolo trumpet for an arrangement of the Aria from Villa-Lobos’ Bachiana Brasilena No. 5, which featured a soulful cantabile line over restless pizzicato strings. The Latin American set continued with arrangements of two Piazzolla pieces, Escualo and Invierno Porteno (a jazzy flugelhorn showcase), and two pieces composed by Flores—Morocota and Labios Vermelhos (a delightful samba). The final selection on the program was Oscher’s Soledad, which began with a poignant solo for the English horn, followed by increasingly elaborate variations from Flores, culminating in a blizzard of figuration leading to a final climax. The audience leapt to their feet in an immediate ovation, bringing Flores back for multiple bows until he agreed to play an encore, a tender ballad that he dedicated to ITG Honorary Award Winner Marie Speziale. When it was all over, he got down on one knee, blew her a kiss, and bowed like a gallant Knight of the Realm. (EK)