Guitar Concertos

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

For today's Showdown, we're looking at guitar concertos. You told us Joaquín Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez was your favorite and we played the winner today at 12 noon.


Heitor Villa-Lobos

Joaquín Rodrigo

Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco

Comments [34]

Michael Meltzer

Taken at face value, "Showdown @ High Noon" can be taken as a good-natured attempt, albeit Micky Mouse, to introduce a "fun" game to classical music listening.
Taken in the broader context of the challenges of good programming, and added to features such as your "Top 50 " at year-end, it can be viewed as an attempt to ameliorate those challenges by narrowing the field of selection, rather than attacking the broad spectrum of good listening repertoire with discernment, energy and enthusiasm.
Among the real things we await from WQXR is that mission statement, telling us the goals and guidelines to which WQXR management and staff are to be held accountable.

Mar. 16 2011 04:32 PM
Ralph from Delaware

Where's the hot poker when I need it. Why not play the Moonlight, Clair de Lune and Fur Elise and finally put me out of my misery.

Mar. 16 2011 02:55 PM
Sea Murmurs

I know I shouldn't get upset about these things, but here I am struggling to finish a terrible paper and all WQXR can give me is Rodrigo....

Just spice up my life a tiny little bit. It would be like playing an all Saint-Saens violin program - BORING,,,,

Mar. 16 2011 02:14 PM
Neil Schnall

It should be clear, based on the written comments, that this was an unfair contest between something played ad nauseum and two works relatively infrequently played. I supposed, having based this on an actual tally of votes cast, you were honor-bound to play the one with the highest score. People tend to favor the comfort zone of familiarity, so I predicted from the moment I heard the set-up this morning that Rodrigo would win, a foregone conclusion. Have a little gumption, once in a while!

Mar. 16 2011 02:10 PM

Try also Miles Davis on "Sketches of Spain"

Mar. 16 2011 01:29 PM
Sea Murmurs

Whatevs... We all know Castelnuovo Tedesco was (and should) be the real winner.


Mar. 16 2011 01:22 PM
Don Fodor

If anyone is interested in a different spin on Rodrigo's "Concierto" try listening to the jazz version done by guitarist Jim Hall. One of my favorites,dates back to the 80's but still sounds great with an all star band backing him up.

Mar. 16 2011 12:34 PM
Michael Meltzer

Now is the time to take out the Villa-Lobos Etudes and Preludes for solo guitar and show your listeners what a guitar really can do!
The WQXR guitar repertoire is getting very, very tiresome. If you were still using LP's, the needle would have worn through to the other side for your whole roster by now.

Mar. 16 2011 12:34 PM
Al Luna from Bronx, NY

Classical Greatest Hits!!!!
Play Vivaldi's "4 Seasons" next!
Then Beethoven's 5th Symphony
Brahm's 1st Symphony
Holts "The Planets"
Ravel's "Bolero"

Mar. 16 2011 12:31 PM
Counce Hancock from Avon, CT

Too bad - QXR listeners probably listen to music all of the time - and Rodrigo frequently. We could have taken advantage of your library to hear one of the sounds less traveled.

Mar. 16 2011 12:20 PM
Benjamin Myers

Hi Guys,

can we NOT have Sharon Isbin! She is so overplayed. Let's hear Manuel Barrueco, or John Williams.


Benjamin (and Neil)

Mar. 16 2011 11:45 AM

If you play the Rodrigo, please play Sharon Isbin's account on Virgin, with Lawrence Foster conducting the Chamber Orchestra of Lausanne. Although her Grammy award winning version with the NY Phil is also excellent, I think her earlier one with Maestro Foster is even better.

Mar. 16 2011 11:38 AM
Howard Spielman

The Concierto de Aranjuez is by far the most beautifull piece, but I also agree that there are better "Guitar" challenges to it's beauty than the two given.

Mar. 16 2011 11:37 AM

The "Concierto de Aranjuez" is indeed played often, but there's a reason for that: it's because it's far and away the finest. If I'm feeling stressed, this guitar concerto is the best cure. By the way, Midge, if you play the Rodrigo piece, be sure to tell the story about how the composer got into hot water by not dedicating it to Andrés Segovia. He made up for it by writing "Fantasia para un Gentilhombre" and dedicating that piece to Segovia.

Mar. 16 2011 11:07 AM
Al Luna from Bronx, NY

I would love to hear Anton Garcia Abril "Concierto Mudejar" or Torroba's "Puertas De Madrid", but I'm voting for Villa-Lobos. The Rodrigo is overplayed!

Mar. 16 2011 11:00 AM
Kerry J. Dinkin

I love them all, but let's face it: we hear the Rodrigo all the time! How about the Castelnuovo-Tedesco, which is lovely but rarely heard on the air?

Mar. 16 2011 10:47 AM
Ralph from Delaware

I'll take a hot poker in the eye before listening to Rodrigo again.

Villa-Lobos please. The best 20th century composer (sorry Stravinsky and Gershwin).

Mar. 16 2011 10:34 AM

Villa much rodrigo!

Mar. 16 2011 10:27 AM
Barbara Charlot

I vote for Tedesco too. Although certainly beautiful... Rodrigo is heard often enough. Something different today. Thanks!

Mar. 16 2011 10:05 AM
Morris Solomon from New York

Villa-Lobos deserves a hearing

Mar. 16 2011 10:01 AM
cynthia raymond from nyc

I vote for Tedesco which I do not know at all...I listen to the rodrigo all the time and have my own copies so 2nd choice is villa-lobos...

Mar. 16 2011 09:59 AM
Walter Bayer from Anguilla, B.W.I.

The Concierto de Aranjuez is a staple of every classical music station, and, lovely as it is, I vote for the work by Castelnuovo-Tedesco. I feel it deserves greater exposure.

Mar. 16 2011 09:34 AM
Rita from Cresskill, NJ

Villa-Lobos gets my vote

Mar. 16 2011 09:28 AM
richard rosenbluth from Englewood, NJ

Who doesn't adore the Rodrigo? But, let's admit it folks, we hear it incessantly. Let's go for the Villa-Lobos today.

Mar. 16 2011 09:17 AM
Dani from New Rochelle, NY

I love them all, but I'm voting for Rodrigo today.

Mar. 16 2011 08:59 AM
Phyllis Sharpe

My vote is definitely for the Rodrigo.
And I have another suggestion for a Count-down. How about which Latin American composition by Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra do you want to hear?
Or what do you want to hear all day on July 4, 2011? It could be a history of the US through music. It would also have to include music not considered Classical but definitely classic. A program of music by the people, for the people. Think about it!

Mar. 16 2011 08:59 AM
Phil Pollack from Seaford, NY

Well, the Rodrigo is my favorite. But, I voted to hear the Villa-Lobos today as it's been quite a while since I've heard it.

Mar. 16 2011 08:20 AM
Julia de Bary

In this raining day....Joaquin Rodrigo an his Concierto de Aranjuez bring all the sun I need to go thru the day :)

Mar. 16 2011 07:55 AM
kyllene cox

I vote for Joaquin Rodrigo.
This is the only way I can vote today.

Mar. 16 2011 07:44 AM
Tripthi Pillai

My vote goes to Heitor Villa-Lobos. (But truly any one of the pieces is fantastic and would be a treat.)

Mar. 16 2011 07:08 AM
Lee Hanson from Nanuet, NY

I like the Villa-Lobos but hear it frequently, so I voted for the Castelnuovo-Tedesco concerto to become more familiar with it.

Mar. 16 2011 07:03 AM
Bruce Heister from Palo Alto CA

My desert island piece--Concierto de Aranjuez by Rodrigo.

Mar. 16 2011 06:13 AM


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Mar. 16 2011 06:00 AM
Michael Meltzer

Nothing seems to be functioning up there, unless I don't have the right softwear.
I know these pieces, I vote for Villa-Lobos.

Mar. 16 2011 05:41 AM

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