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Classical Music Review

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Parallel Realms
XXI Century Works for Orchestra


Composer: Sergio Cervetti
Conductor: Petr Vronský
Performed by: Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra
Label: Navona Records
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 08 March 2019

Navona Records release three pieces by Sergio Cervetti (Sunset at Noon; Triptych Revelation) on Parallel Realms. Born in Uruguay, immigrated to the United States in 1962 to study contemporary composition, Cervetti's work contains a certain cosmopolitan quality reflective of his past and present. Although essentially a minimalist since 1970, he has branched out to embrace and incorporate diverse elements from a variety of aesthetics...

Under the guidance of conductor Petr Vronský, the Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra deliver a passionate and moving performance of three pieces by Sergio Cervetti: 'Et in Arcadia ego' (2017) (20 min, 31 sec); 'Consolamentum' (2016) (14 min, 39 sec); and 'Plexus' (1970 revised 2016) (13 min, 13 sec).

'Et in Arcadia ego' was inspired by a journey to the island reserve Martín García off the coast of Uruguay, which Cervetti undertook as a young boy. It illustrates the traveler's awe at reaching a paradisaical shore.

'Consolamentum' is an homage to the Cathar and Albigensian martyrs who suffered persecution by the Catholic Church in 12th-century Southern France. The title alludes to the unique, somewhat mystified sacrament of the former, which was considered an immersion in the Holy Spirit and supposed to bring about absolution from all sin.

'Plexus' is a minimalist, aleatoric composition designed to mimic a branching network of nerves, being, in its own right, an intricate microcosm of structure and sound.

These three pieces are diverse, but work beautifully when buffeted up against one another. Towards the end of 'Et in Arcadia ego' there's an eerie, almost Bernard Herrmann-esque vibe. 'Consolamentum' has all the hallmarks of Gustav Holst's work. And 'Plexus' is a piece that is the musical equivalent of an out of body experience.

All three pieces are emotionally uplifting and richly rewarding. This is certainly Cervetti at his finest.


Darren Rea

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