Review of LNT124: Francisco Mignone - Piano Music
Robert Maycock, BBC Music Magazine
Gradually they are coming in from the margins, the composers from southern Europe, South America and further afield. We hear traditional music, we travel, our ears open, and we find the likes of Clélia Iruzun who not only knew her late Brazilian compatriot Francisco Mignone but is the dedicatee of several pieces.
Mignone's mark on the wider world, such as it is, comes from orchestral works, but the piano music here is a revelation. Mellower in harmony than his contemporary Heitor Villa-Lobos, he integrates home-grown elements into a mainstream Parisian language with a deftness and variety of texture that recall Albéniz. Genres range from numerous kinds of valse to a two-movement Sonatina with sophisticated developments of vernacular materials.
There are preludes of Chopinesque length and poetry, but individual ways of using pounding chords and dance rhythms. A set of Transcendental Studies evokes not so much Liszt as the Études of Debussy: you can hear which techniques they work on, but the idea is to poeticise them rather than push them to superhuman extremes. All this is confidently encompassed by Iruzun with terrific energy and verve, in honest unadorned sound like a piano in a room rather than a producer's plaything.