Tenth-grader Aubrey Hamilton won the Spokane Symphony’s third annual essay contest.
The essay topic this year was “Reflections on a Spanish Theme.” Hamilton is home-schooled.
This is her essay:
Wildly beautiful, Spanish music is filled with passion, intensity, sorrow and magnificence.
Carlos Surinach, a Spanish composer, created Buleris, Seata and Gorrotin. With a steady percussion beat, wild guitar and vocals, Buleris causes one’s blood to boil and feet to itch from the desire to join the graceful dancers. Seata brings to life sorrow and ritual beauty, through drum beat and sweet wind solos. Garottin returns us to the crazed and infuriated beat of intense dance, punctuated by strong percussion beats and occasional flying winds.
Manuel De Falla is a name linked to the grandeur, passion and desperate fervor of his ballet, “El Amor Brujo.” Through mysterious music and passionate dance, “El Amor Brujo” tells of a young woman haunted by the ghost of her cruel lover. In the movement, Danzez de fugo, Carmelo desperately tries to banish the ghost through crazed dance and sorcery. Beginning slowly, showing the hesitant desperation of Carmelo, the music grows vehemently until she falls to the ground, exhausted.
Blind, but seeing through his ears, imagination and the musical passion that is inborn in all humanity, Joaquin Rodrigo created Concerto de Aranjuez. Contrasting other more ethnical pieces, Rodrigo’s Concerto demonstrates a stately, classical manner.
Upon opening, a cheery guitar solo shines and the violins repeat the theme, jumping and laughing as they rush from one note to the next. Mournful horns clench the listener’s heart, slow the breath and widen the mind to the grace of Spanish music. Suddenly, all is silent and a guitar is heard, deeply elegant. Finally, the concerto ends with jovial guitar, leaving listeners feeling merry.
Other Spanish creations are Ginastero’s haunting, blood-boiling pieces and Nikolay Rimsky-Korsakov’s intense, ethnical Capriccio espagnol.
The cultural beauty, passion and uniqueness of rhythm that grace Spanish compositions are a gift to the world of music.