Audience Review: Jorge Caballero, Peru

jorgecaballero_sq_med_rgbJorge Caballero – January 28, 2017

When one is in the presence of greatness, one should be aware of it. I was certainly so on Saturday evening in the Montgomery College Cultural Arts Center in Silver Spring. From the moment Jorge Caballero sat down and composed himself to present an exquisite rendering of four pieces from the Iberia Suite by Albeniz, my understanding of the capacity of the acoustic guitar was forever altered. With an impassioned performance, Mr. Caballero perceptively communicated the poetic Evocation with its echoes of Spanish fandango and jota song forms. He moved with such ease into El Puerto, a fine Andalusian could have cantered in natural gait to its rhythms. And, El Albaicin and Malaga further bore us through the southern Spanish coast sharing its culture and images. Only absent was the fine wine and food to accompany these masterful pieces.

From J.S. Bach’s Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue, BWV 903, the take away impression was simply stunning, stunning, stunning. To reduce a score written for an instrument with two manuals and five octaves each and impose it onto an instrument with just six strings is nothing less than insane. What’s even more insane is that it actually works, at least in the hands of Mr. Caballero whose command of his instrument is, I’m sure, the envy of many a performer eking out a career in this demanding profession. The rapid fire execution of scales and counterpoint might cause any keyboardist to permanently close the lid on their instrument; but, to conquer its fugal fingering on six strings, well, the only comparison is that both the harpsichord and acoustic guitar are plucked.

Intermission gave listeners time to recover from part one of the program, but nothing could have prepared us for part two. As one of only two guitarists in the world to have mastered Mussorgsky’s Pictures at an Exhibition on six strings, Mr. Caballero made Bach’s Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue sound like Lesson Book I instruction. All that can be said is the man has skills — many, many gifts and even more skills to back up his inborn, natural ability. I wasn’t expecting to attend a guitar concert and hear all virtuoso compositions originally composed for the keyboard. Guitarists are renowned for their ability to interpret music written for other instruments, but this program presented us with some of the most difficult keyboard music one could tackle and yet there we were transfixed by not only the tremendous aptitude of this performer but by the amazing sound and dynamic of his playing. You would be amazed too, if you were to plug into the Marlow Series. Its reputation attracts the best guitarists this temporal world offers.   What a gift to this community, unlike any other. And, Jorge Caballero confirmed for us Saturday just how fortunate we are to be on the receiving end of greatness.

Looking forward to hearing Antigoni Goni from Greece on February 25th at Westmoreland Congregational Church in Bethesda.

Deborah Drayer

Getting ready for the John E. Marlow Guitar Season 2016-2017!

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Dear friends,

You may have already seen one reminder that went out about one of our artists just today. It gave me an excuse to write up a post that describes the entire season.

In case you haven’t visited our Facebook page or our ticket website, this is where you can get your Season tickets: marlowguitar.org and listen to music clip samples.

jv_med_sqJason Vieaux, USA
Saturday, October 22, 2016
8pm

Westmoreland Congregational Church
1 Westmoreland Circle, Bethesda, MD 20816

Get your Season Tickets Here

 

 

 

ri_med_sqRene Izquierdo, CUBA
Saturday, November 19, 2016
8pm

Westmoreland Congregational Church
1 Westmoreland Circle, Bethesda, MD 20816

Get your Season Tickets Here

 

 

 

zd_med_sqZoran Dukic, CROATIA
Saturday, January 28, 2017
8pm

Cultural Arts Center Montgomery College
7995 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring/Takoma Park, MD 20910

Get your Season Tickets Here

 

 

 

ag_med_sqAntigoni Goni, GREECE
Saturday, February 25, 2017
8pm

Westmoreland Congregational Church
1 Westmoreland Circle, Bethesda, MD 20816

Get your Season Tickets Here

 

 

 

me_med_sqMargarita Escarpa, SPAIN
Saturday, March 18, 2017
8pm

Westmoreland Congregational Church
1 Westmoreland Circle, Bethesda, MD 20816

Get your Season Tickets Here

 

 

 

bg_med_sqSaturday, April 22, 2017
8pm

Westmoreland Congregational Church
1 Westmoreland Circle, Bethesda, MD 20816

Billy Novick & Guy Van Duser, USA

Get your Season Tickets Here