Candlelight Concert | Fahmi Alqhai | Accademia del Piacere
Italian opera dominated the musical life of the Baroque era throughout most of Europe. The Iberian Peninsula was no exception. One of the foremost forces in the Spanish music theatre of this time was Sebastián Durón, who was at first active as an organist in Seville Cathedral. He frequently had to contend with the reproach that he was ingratiating himself to the “Italian style”, but the opposite was the case: based on Italian models, Durón developed a fervid and spirited musical idiom that was a great influence on the genre of the zarzuela – the Spanish operetta. He cleverly combined Italian theatrical conventions with the vitality and passion of Spanish folklore.
The extraordinary Catalonian soprano and the brilliant Spanish gambist Fahmi Alquai along with the ensemble Accademia del Piacere are championing the unjustly forgotten composer Durón. In their recital Muera Cupido, they present the highlights of Spanish Baroque opera – the CD album with the same title received an OPUS KLASSIK award in 2020. Besides Durón’s compositions, works of Italian composers can be heard – including Giovanni Bononcini’s – which were found in the Spanish National Library in Madrid and must doubtlessly have provided Durón with some valuable ideas and inspiration.