Sunday, February 19, 2012

yes I do plan to get around to writing about Ferdinand Rebay

It's just going to take some time.  After nearly fifty years (it seems) of the composer's work getting no attention, performances, or recordings the last six years or so have seen a revival in the fortunes of the composer's music.  That might just be saying that hundreds or thousands of people have heard the name Ferdinand Rebay worldwide but, hey, in the world of chamber music for classical guitar that's enough to constitute a great revival in reputation ... isn't it?  I've been wanting to write about Rebay's music for a while now but becoming more familiar with his work takes time when you don't have money.

Nevertheless thanks to the generosity of a few people I have been able to learn more about Rebay's work and it has been a rewarding process of discovery, particularly as Rebay began a big cycle of duo sonatas for guitar with woodwinds and strings in the 1920s that led to fifteen sonatas.  When you discover that nearly a century ago a composer actually tackled the kind of project you've been working on yourself over the last twelve years you naturally want to get some idea how that earlier project worked out.  So I'm hoping, eventually, to engage the works of Rebay as they now constitute the closest thing I would have had to a model to examine for my own series of sonatas for guitar with woodwinds, strings, and brass I've been working on over the last twelve years. 

If you have any information, resources ,or thoughts about Ferdinand Rebay's music feel free to comment away on this thread.  Rebay's life and work are overdue for continual exploration and promotion.  I'm biased by my decade-plus committment to composing and learning about chamber music for the guitar.  If you know of biographical resources that are not Wikipedia'd let me know (I don't trust Wikipedia as an actual scholarly resource for scholarly stuff, though for pop culture it's not so bad).

If you know of anyone who has recorded the various sonatas feel free to post discography listings here.  I found recordings of the complete clarinet/guitar works and the oboe/guitar works a while back.  I know there are other chamber sonatas and pieces in Rebay's catalog of works. 

I've been busy tackling free lance projects off-line over the last month so there's been a number of things I've been interested in tackling I just haven't tackled yet.  Not to seem too pragmatic and self-interested but there comes a point in a person's life when you just focus on the paying gigs in the real world rather than just blog about the things that interest or intrigue you.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

The quartets with have just been released:):

http://www.brilliantclassics.com/release.aspx?id=FM00402313

Anonymous said...

Sorry, I made a mistake:): the quartets with Guitar

Anonymous said...

I forgot! And also some guitar Lieder:

http://www.arsis.es/Catalogo_1.html

Wenatchee the Hatchet said...

Thank you. :-)

It's too bad I've got zero disposable income at this point but I'll keep these recordings in mind and hope that they're still in print by the time I get a steady job. Meanwhile, thanks to some friends I will at least be able to write about the oboe/clarinet chamber works soon.