Concert Review: Twilight Musical Dialogues – Spain and South America/ Walker/Rojas-Gonzales/Carraro

Daniel Rojas-Gonzales, Sally Walker and William Carraro
Daniel Rojas-Gonzales, Sally Walker and William Carraro

Twilight Musical Dialogues: Music from Spain and South America

Sally Walker, flute, Daniel Rojas-Gonzales, piano, William Carraro, violin

10 November, 2017

Adamstown Uniting Church, Newcastle, New South Wales

Written by Joseph Asquith

It was an inimitable night for music in the city of Newcastle, with the fifth concert of Twilight Musical Dialogues featuring music of Spain and South America.

This time, flautist extraordinaire and artistic director of the concert series, Sally Walker was joined by acclaimed pianist of tango and Latin music Daniel Rojas-Gonzales, along with a special appearance from rising young violinist William Carraro.

Much of the charm of this concert lay in the variety of styles encompassed within the wider idiom of Spanish and South American music. There was tango with a flute and piano rendition of Astor Piazzolla’s Oblivion (arranged by Rojas-Gonzales) and Coco Nelegatti’s El Cronopio and Milonga del Serafin, Argentinian folk inflections in Introducción y Allegro by Carlos Guastivino and the perhaps more familiar Spanish melodic themes in the seamless virtuosity of Carmen Fantasy, written by François Borne. A premiere of Navegar by Daniel Rojas-Gonzales himself also took place in this concert. Navegar draws influence from milonga campera, a slow subgenre of tango, which gave this piece an aesthetic of contemplation coupled with an infectious rhythmic drive.

Featured in this concert additionally were the talents of fourteen-year old violinist William Carraro, who performed the tango-influenced work Jalousie by Jacob Thune Hansen Gade. Carraro infused his playing with the necessary rhythmic energy and dynamic passion for which tango music is renowned. This performance was delivered by Carraro with confidence, polish and poise, ensuring a highly promising candidate in the future of Australian music. As a welcome gratuity, the end of concert invited Tango dancers to the stage in elegant ‘flash-mob’ style.

This was the final instalment of the 2017 Twilight Musical Dialogues concert series. This concert, like all others in the series, was performed with reverence, engagement, élan, sophistication and world-class musicianship. The series has been an important part of the musical rejuvenation in the city of Newcastle, giving hope to musicians and audience members alike.

Joseph Asquith for SoundsLikeSydney©

Newcastle-based pianist, Joseph Asquith is a writer and educator who developed a love for music in his teens, while learning piano with esteemed Newcastle pianist/teacher Marilyn Wilson. Joseph subsequently completed his Bachelor of Music (Honours) in 2015 at the University of Newcastle, studying with Helen English and Rosalind Halton.

Joseph has also received private piano tutelage from renowned pianists Michael Kieran-Harvey (Tasmania), Andrew Chubb (Newcastle) and Paul Hersh (San Francisco). He is a sought-after ensemble member/accompanist, using his skill in various genres including opera, classical, folk and contemporary pop.

Joseph has a love for musicology and writing about music. He established a reputation as a freelance music journalist in Newcastle, reviewing touring artists. As a writer he has liaised with prestigious national and international artists and ensembles including Imogen Cooper, Elena Kats-Chernin, The Sitkovetsky Trio, American Brass Quintet, and the Keleman String Quartet. 

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