Thursday, December 21, 2017

Italian Cultural Institute to Host a Vocal “Journey”

The Italian Cultural Institute (Istituto Italiano de Cultura, IIC) will ring in the New Year by hosting their next concert. According to my records, all previous recitals have involved instrumentalists, which means that next month’s program will be the first devoted to art song. The title of that program will Il cammino della voce (the journey of the voice); and it will be presented by South Korean soprano Joo Cho accompanied by Italian pianist Marino Nahon.

Joo Cho and Marino Nahon, courtesy of IIC

The “journey” of the program will trace the advance of modernism across the twentieth century. The earliest work to be performed will be Gian Francesco Malipiero’s settings of two sonnets by the sixteenth-century Italian poet Francesco Berni, which were first published in 1922 and reflect the composer’s rejection of nineteenth-century practices in favor of pre-Classical approaches. There will also be works by two composers who were part of the major aesthetic shift that emerged after the end of the Second World War. Luciano Berio will conclude the program with his four “popular songs,” the first three of which were composed in 1947, followed by one more in 1952. The other one of these composers will be Luigi Dallapiccola, who will open the program with his 1948 settings of four lyric poems by Antonio Machado.

All of the remaining composers on the program are still alive. Most likely, none of them will be familiar to most of the audience. In order of their birth years, these composers will be Claudio Ambrosini (1948), Paolo Ricci (1949), Alessandro Melchiorre (1951), Osvaldo Coluccino (1963), and two musicians both born in 1968, Corrado Rojac and Gabriele Cosmi. Taken as a whole, this recital promises to be an informative and fascinating journey of discovery.

This concert will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, January 9, and is expected to last for about two hours. IIC is located in the Civic Center at 601 Van Ness Avenue, Suite F. Admission is free, but registration is required to assure having a place. IIC has created a registration page specific for this event. Anyone who registers may also add the names of a maximum of two additional guests. Those wishing further information may call IIC at 415-788-7142.

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