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The Segovia Collection, Vol. 6: Manuel Ponce Sonatas
Genres: New Age, Classical
Manuel Ponce was one of the 20th century's finest composers of guitar music as well as a close friend of Segovia's. His sonatas are excellent pieces that achieved their well-earned popularity largely thanks to Segovia's ad... more »
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Manuel Ponce was one of the 20th century's finest composers of guitar music as well as a close friend of Segovia's. His sonatas are excellent pieces that achieved their well-earned popularity largely thanks to Segovia's advocacy. He's particularly adept in the slow movements, in which he creates that sustained, singing line so difficult to achieve on the guitar. To listen to these performances is to be present at the birth of a grand tradition, and Segovia plays the music with all the love and enthusiasm you could possibly ask for. --David Hurwitz
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Member CD Reviews
Lorelei K. from OWINGS, MD
Reviewed on 3/15/2010...
This is a fine collection of Segovia's more upbeat, popular selections, and is a pleasant and relaxing soundtrack for times when you want to read, enjoy a quiet moment, or feel in a tranquil mood.
Melvyn M. Sobel | Freeport (Long Island), New York | 09/21/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
Amazingly, every sonata on this CD is a gem. Each has its own particular sparkle, its own light. So much a part of my life are they, for over thirty years, that it is difficult attempting favoritism. I treasure them all, equally.
The SONATA MEXICANA is immediately enchanting, especially the first movement theme which grabs you and never lets go. Such an alluring melody! Ponce teases and tantalizes us by weaving brilliantly throughout. The second movement Andante reminds me of a warm Mexican night, of two lovers secretly meeting beneath the light of a full moon. The Intermezzo ("Serenata"), again, finds Ponce's melodic gift at its peak. With a running time of only 1:58, it is an ingenius seque into the final Allegretto, which has a luscious motif, intoxicating and gorgeous. What is most attractive about this sonata, and the others coupled herein, is the restraint Ponce shows in his writing for the guitar. He is not flamboyant, nor showy, nor boisterous. He has no need to impress us with compositional histrionics, no need to "showcase" his abundant talent. His art lies in capturing our hearts and allowing his music to rest there comfortably.
The SONATA ROMANTICA is a wistful nod to Schubert ("Hommage," as Ponce calls it). Another catchy opening Allegro keeps us wanting more. Hard to get enough. The following second movement Andante is of such exquisite melodic beauty it brings tears easily. Segovia's playing here is particularly sensitive. No. More than this: he is truly in touch with Schubert's spirit and Ponce's muse. So touching is the Andante that the Allegretto, next, dries our eyes; yet, even here, a vague melancholy persists. It doesn't get any better than this. So attuned is Ponce to the mournful Schubertian realm that even the last movement Allegro he marks "serioso."
The SONATA CLASSICA tips its hat to Fernando Sor, the legendary composer and guitarist. The opening Allegro is a clever "take" on Sor's penchant for guitar etudes and minuets. A delight! However, the heart of the work resides in the second movement Andante, reminiscent of the classical natures of both Sor and Beethoven, and a beauty. A spritely Menuet follows--- and one chuckles at the cleverness and exactitude of Ponce's mimicry of style. It's a joy to hear. The concluding Allegro, melodic and upbeat, with hints of Mozart, is perfect and fitting.
These three sonatas are balms and, played so lovingly, but never indulgently, by Segovia, I cannot for the life of me see how they could fail to utterly please and charm.
[Running time: 58:38]
Ponce in my blood
gustaff | Mexico D.F., Distrito Federal Mexico | 01/13/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hi there. I have never listen to a song of Ponce played by another guitarist rather than Segovia, well the other one might be myself. This CD is incredible. As a Mexican, I find it as a picture of Mexico ( even that Ponce lived in France for a long time). He is very unknown, here in Mexico, people doesn't recognize his talent. I think is the best CD I have. I hear it every morning since I bought it. Now, I wonder how this same composer would sound in other hands. I myself don't understand Ponce when I see a sheet of music that I haven't listened before. So, Segovia is a great interpreter. One more thing....if someone knows where I can find Music for guitar by Ponce played by segovia, please let me know. I'm interested in the 12 preludes. If you like Mexican music, you should buy this CD. Hasta luego..."