Early Guitars and Vihuela

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Rolf Lislevand plays A.Stradivari Sabionari, 1679 guitar - Santiago de Murcia - Tarantela

Sabato 10 maggio - Auditorium Giovanni Arvedi - ore 21.00, ingresso 10 euro Concerto del chitarrista barocco ROLF LISLEVAND con la chitarra Sabionari, 1679 d...

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Comment by Monica Hall on May 11, 2014 at 22:21

No - but one thing is certain and that is that there is no evidence at all that baroque guitar was ever strung with octaves on the third course.   This is a modern affectation.   At least some of the music in Murcia's manuscripts was originally intended for the "French" tuning i.e. with octave stringing on the fourth course only.

Comment by Jelma van Amersfoort on May 11, 2014 at 16:07

I wonder, is there any very precise primary source information on which tuning Murcia used? 

Comment by Monica Hall on May 11, 2014 at 15:46

First of all - I would use the "French" tuning.  Secondly I would play the notes which are actually written - probably by Murcia himself - in the manuscript rather than something which sounds quite alien to my ears and I would aim for a much more delicate sound - particularly in the strumming.   The idea that Murcia's music is proto flamenco, Mexican or whatever is a bit wide of the mark.   Let me just quote what Alejando Vera says in his edition of Cifras selectas.  "The practice...of filling these pieces with percussion instruments (well at least Lislevand didn't do that on this occasion) and other effects emphasizing their popular effects should be the object of further reflection - at least from a historical point of view".  etc. etc. etc.   Of course there is no reason why anyone shouldn't perform them in any way they like - but I would have thought that the whole point of playing them on an original instrument was to make them sound as they might have done if Murcia was to play them himself.   Of course whether the "Sabionari" guitar in its present state  is actually a typical "original" 5-course guitar is a highly contentious issue.   Don't have time to say more than that at the moment - but I think players need to think a bit more about what they are actually trying to achieve..... 

Comment by Jelma van Amersfoort on May 11, 2014 at 15:33

Monica, what would be an appropriate guitar to play Murcia in your opinion?

Comment by Monica Hall on May 11, 2014 at 15:10

It may be an awesome performance but I think Santiago de Murcia gets a bit lost in the process.   I don't know whether the instrument is still strung with octave stringing on the 3rd course but the strident tone quality and the flamenco style strumming and other effects is not really appropriate for Murcia's music.  I am sure Murcia never played a "restored" Stradivarius guitar either.   

Comment by Alexandros Kalkos on May 8, 2014 at 8:18

Amazing!! Thank you Rolf and Jelma for posting this video!

Comment by Jelma van Amersfoort on May 6, 2014 at 21:59


Comment by Lars Hedelius-Strikkertsen on May 6, 2014 at 21:58
he's awesome

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