AURELIO DE LA VEGA (b.1925): Elegía for String Orchestra, Variación del Recuerdo for String Orchestra, Adiós for Orchestra (National Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra; David Oberg), Tropimapal for 9 Instruments (North/South Consonance Ensemble; Max Lifchitz).
Catalogue Number: 10L083
Reference: N/S R 1051
Description: A Cuban composer in exile, de la Vega composes in a highly individual style which freely encompasses everything from straightforward diatonic neo-romanticism via intense chromaticism to dodecaphony, atonality and aleatory, and seems no less comfortable in any idiom than any other. The Elegéa and Variación are both lyrical and predominantly tonal; the first, the earliest work here (1954) is melancholy and lyrical, underpinned by Cuban rhythmic figuration; the second (the most recent, 1999) a warmly sensuous chromatic work, gently swaying to Cuban patterns and rhythms. Tropimapal alternates intricate, partially aleatoric sections with warmly sonorous Afro-Cuban tinged lyrical passages. Adiós was written for Zubin Mehta's final season with the L.A. Philharmonic, and celebrates the orchestra in exuberant concerto-for-orchestra style, while incorporating a large number of quotations from and allusions to repertory works of importance to Mehta, notably by Richard Strauss, Bruckner and Mahler, as well as self-quotations and national anthems- sometimes quoted more or less literally, elsewhere set into a more modern musical matrix with Schnittke-like polystylistic bravura.