Torroba Burgalesa question

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gstinson
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Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by gstinson » Thu Jun 15, 2017 3:17 am

Going through a pile of old music the other day, I came across a copy of Burgalesa that a former student of mine brought back from a summer studying in Spain. This was back in the 70's. It's a xerox copy of a handwritten part in the key of E. Seems to be a Segovia version. However, I see that Julian Bream, David Russell and many others play it in F#. I've also heard the version in G, which is supposedly the change made by Cesar Amaro and Torroba himself. Key change aside, there are some other differences, which to my ear were stronger in the earlier (E) version. Does anyone know how/why these changes came about?
- m3, m11, m27 - my old version has dotted eighth/sixteenth/eight rhythm in the melody. The newer recordings play straight eighth notes.
- m7, m31 - old version has a ii7 (e.g. F#min7 in the E version) on beat 1. Newer recordings play a IV chord.
Insights appreciated!
Greg

Ray
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Re: Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by Ray » Sat Jun 17, 2017 3:39 am

gstinson wrote:
Thu Jun 15, 2017 3:17 am
Going through a pile of old music the other day, I came across a copy of Burgalesa that a former student of mine brought back from a summer studying in Spain. This was back in the 70's. It's a xerox copy of a handwritten part in the key of E. Seems to be a Segovia version. However, I see that Julian Bream, David Russell and many others play it in F#. I've also heard the version in G, which is supposedly the change made by Cesar Amaro and Torroba himself. Key change aside, there are some other differences, which to my ear were stronger in the earlier (E) version. Does anyone know how/why these changes came about?
- m3, m11, m27 - my old version has dotted eighth/sixteenth/eight rhythm in the melody. The newer recordings play straight eighth notes.
- m7, m31 - old version has a ii7 (e.g. F#min7 in the E version) on beat 1. Newer recordings play a IV chord.
Insights appreciated!
Greg
Yes I've always wondered what the original key of this piece was. I'm going to say that F# is the original key and that Segovia thought it way too hard to play in that key because of the stretches so he transposed down a whole step to E where it's much easier to play. He also changed a few harmonies/chords and rhythms here and there as he edited many of the pieces written for him and he wanted to match how he hears this melody in his head.

The handwritten score you have is simply a by-ear transcription of Segovia's recording which was never officially published. I personally like the E major version better but I probably wouldn't use the dotted rhythms and Segovia-esque rubato when playing it but more of the flowing even 8th notes of the F# Major Schott version.

Brynmor
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Re: Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by Brynmor » Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:06 pm

My copy of Schott Guitar Archive 113, described as the Edition Andres Segovia, is in the key of F#. There are straight eighth notes on measures 3, 11 and 27 and there is a IV chord at measures 7.

Luis_Br
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Re: Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by Luis_Br » Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:55 pm

I think Segovia transposition also has some practical concert objectives. He played it inside the Piezas Caracteristicas, replacing one of the movements. Other pieces from the suite are in E, this also avoids changing tuning for a piece inside suite, which might break listenning continuity.
A good tip for playing in original key is to tune 6th string to F# and rise an octave the few low D's. I think in some part this change of D octave up makes voice conducting even better.

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David_Norton
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Re: Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by David_Norton » Fri Jun 23, 2017 12:48 am

Just an observation on this Burgalesa:

In "The Segovia-Ponce Letters", in a letter dated 20 July 1927, Segovia writes --

"I have put the piecettes of Torroba into my fingers, among which is an andante, composed of two marvelous burgalesas, which have made me to think about what you would have done with them...."

So this prompts some discussion points. First, these are clearly two separate works which have been conjoined. Segovia did the same with two "Songs for the Young by Robert Schumann, which he combined as "Romanza", and also a pair of minuets by Handel which he reclassified as a single piece "Allegretto grazioso". Second, the comment "what you would have done with them...." suggests that these maybe are not entirely original, but are harmonizations of existing songs from the city of Burgos. Torroba used an existing folksong for the middle part of "Fandanguillo" in Suite Castellana, so there's precedent for doing this again with this work.

No answers, just questions.
David Norton
Salt Lake City, UT

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jayjayrose
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Re: Torroba Burgalesa question

Post by jayjayrose » Sat Jun 24, 2017 2:08 am

This piece is on my life list of ones to learn, since it is on the 1949 Decca LP which introduced my young ears to classical guitar. I will follow the discussion with interest.
"…that all-pervading talisman of Spanish pleasure, the guitar." -Washington Irving

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