Scéne Andalouse for Piano Sextet, Op.7
Joaquin Turina's Scéne Andalouse, as it was entitled by his Parisian publisher (Escena Andaluza in Spanish), dates from 1912 at a time when he was finishing his studies at Schola Cantorum with d'Indy. His earlier works had shown the influence of the French Impressionist school as well as that of César Franck, d'Indy's own teacher. However, two of his fellow countrymen and important composers then living in Paris, Isaac Albeniz and Manuel de Falla, took him aside and encouraged to find inspiration in the popular music of Spain and Andalusía. This he did. The opening movement, Crepuscule de Soir (at twilight) begins with an evocative short prelude first in the piano and then the first viola (our soundbite starts here) The music is highly romantic and clearly shows the influence of Andalusia. The pizzicato in the lower strings is evocative of guitars. The second movement, A la fenetra (at the window), brings to mind a serenade, a lover singing to his beloved. The music is at times tender and at others bursting with passion.
Joaquín Turina (1882-1949) was born in the Spanish city of Seville. At the age of four he was given as a gift an accordion and surprised everyone with the speed and facility he learned to play. In 1894 he began his formal studies of harmony theory and counterpoint. Almost immediately he began to compose small pieces. In 1905 he, as most other Spanish composers of the time, went to Paris where he studied piano with Moszkowsky and composition under Vincent d'Indy in the Schola Cantorum. . After finishing his studies, Turina moved to Madrid where he spent the rest of his life composing and teaching.
A highly evocative and lovely work, long out of print, here is a work which belongs in the concert hall but which can also be enjoyed by amateurs.