It was a wonderful expereince to attend the Brazilian premieres of `Earthrise’ & `Storm Surge’ as part of III Semana da Composição para Bandas. There were three Composers-in-Residence at the Conservatório de Tatuí, Michael Rose (USA), Alexandre Travassos (Brazil) and myself from the UK. The Festival was organised by Dario Sotelo assisted by Inez Martins also a wonderful conductor of vision.
I witnessed the most extraordinary concert while at the Conservatório de Tatuí (14/05/14), one that will keep within my memory for ever, given by the Concerto Banda Sinfonica do Conservatorio de Tatui under the brilliant direction of Dario Sotelo – Wow! The first two works were written by the Brazilian composer Alexandre Travassos – what a talent! His overture `Captura do Saci’ should be staple repertoire for serious minded orchestras. Dario also performed David Gillingham’s masterwork ‘Cantus Laetus’ – the orchestra’s performance during the evening was simply stunning. Dario finalised the concert with my elemental symphonic portrait `Storm Surge’ with a moving poem read over the music written by Martin Westlake (listen to extract below). Originally premiered in october 2013 by Peter Kleine Schaars and theMarinierskapel der Koninklijke Marine the orchestra gave a memorable Brazilian premiere. The audience at the end were so silent in respect, as they remembered the 2,551 souls who perished in the tragic storm that hit the North Europe coast (and in particular) the Netherlands in 1953. The second concert on the Saturday (17/05/14) featured more work by Alexandre Travassos and the Brazilian premiere of `Flat Rock’ by US composer Michael Alec Rose. `Flat Rock’ was originally premiered in the USA by Dr Reed Thomas and the Middle Tennessee State University Wind Ensemble. Dario and the orchestra also gave a tremendous reading of my `Earthrise’!! It’s such a rare privilege to be a musician and have such experiences and to witness the musical vision of Dario Sotelo is certainly a privilege!! The whole approach to music education in Tatui, is creative and enlightened and is encouraging to know that there are places in the world that are really getting it right – we have so much to learn!!!! Nigel Clarke
Here is a short extract of the Concerto Banda Sinfonica do Conservatorio de Tatui under the direction of Dario Sotelo performing the final section of `Storm Surge’ on 14/05/14.