New CD: Interview with the Puerta-Vázquez Duo
—In the early 1960s, at the request of the legendary Presti-Lagoya Duo, Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco composed his first work for two guitars, the Sonatina Canonica, op 196 (1961). He went on to write three more: Les Guitares Bien Tempérées op. 199 (1962), the Concerto for two Guitars and Orchestra, op. 201 (1962), and, after Ida Presti’s untimely death in 1967, he composed the Fuga Elegiaca in her memory. In 1967 he also began work on the Appunti op.210, an ambitious project dedicated to young guitarists. Conceived as a four-volume collection of solo guitar pieces based on the fundamentals of modern guitar music, only the first two books were completed before the composer’s death in 1968. On their their new recording, Appunti (Contrastes), the Arizona-based duo of José Luis Puerta and Alfredo Vázquez explore some of these late guitar works. The title of their CD reflects the heart of the project: transcriptions for two guitars by the late Prof. David Grimes of ten short pieces from the second volume of the Appunti, which Mario had based on dances of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The Duo kindly agreed to tell us more about themselves and the realization of their recording project.