CHARLES CAMILLERI (1931-2009): Piano Concerto No. 1 “Mediterranean”, Concerto for Accordion and String Orchestra, Malta Suite.
Catalogue Number: 09R010
Description: These exceedingly attractive works date from early in the prolific composer's career, when he was forging a personal idiom from a fusion of a thoroughly tonal romantic idiom with elements of Maltese folk music. The piano concerto's first movement is a motoric toccata with a slow central section very reminiscent of Rachmaninov. The languid slow movement has the piano spinning lazy modally inflected arabesques over a stately, somnolent accompaniment, and the finale is an energetic tarantella in rondo form. Camilleri was a noted accordion virtuoso, and the modestly proportioned concerto humorously surveys the concerto from the classical, romantic and modern periods, playfully surprising the listener with unexpected timbre of the solo instrument in a deadpan pastiche of sonata form, quasi-liturgical high seriousness, and a frantic dodecaphonic toccata. The Suite is a reworking of Maltese folksong melodies into colorful dances depicting scenes from village life, full of atmosphere, charm and youthful exuberance. Charlene Farrugia (piano), Franko Bozac (accordion), Malta Philharmonic Orchestra; Miran Vaupotic.