Cello Sonata in f minor, Op.26
Gaito's Cello Sonata in f minor was composed in 1918 at the very end of his so-called universalist period in which he combined elements of romantic Italian lyricism with touches of French impressionism. (In his later works he sought to compose in a nationalist vein) The work is in three movements and begins with an Allegro moderato which is dominated by a highly rhythmic theme. A second subject, closely related to the first, is presented in fugal form. The middle movement, Andante sostenuto, is dark-hued and brooding. The finale, also an Allegro moderato, is dominated by two themes, the first, as in the first movement, dominated by its rhythm and the second more lyrical and impassioned.
Constantino Gaito (1878-1945) was born in Buenos Aires, son of an Italian violinist who played an important part in the musical life of the city. He received his first lessons from his fathers and then received a grant from the Argentine government to study in Europe. He chose the Naples Conservatory where he studied with Giuseppe Martucci among others. After returning to Argentina, he pursued a multifaceted career as a pianist, conductor, composer and teacher and was one of Argentina's most important composers from the first half of the 20th century.
This is an interesting work from an important South American composer which should be of interest to cellists looking for an early modern work which is well-written and effective.