Those Benalmadenses who sat at home missed a true treat yesterday evening at the Castillo Bil-Bil. And what’s more the pleasure was gratis. Mind, it was a full-house, so they would not have gained entry anyhow! That elusive cultural guide that readers may recall I had to go hunting for, simply states “Dúo Piano Y Acordeones” with no details as to who the instrumentalists were to be. I dithered about going, thinking that piano with accordion did not sound that compelling. However, at ten past eight, I thought what the heck, one ought to try everything at least once; and so made a dash for the venue, which is just round the corner from my current residence.
At quarter past eight there were only scattered odd seats available. I spotted one at the end of a row near the back and settled down to read the programme. It transpired we were to be regaled by Juan Solorzano, a renowned accordionist, especially in France, and by Marcos Bello, a resident of the Costa del Sol and an habitué guest at top private functions as well as a performer in many of the tourist destination’s top hotels.
[Image description: Marcos Bello introducing the programme]
[Image description: Juan Solorzano with his accordion]
The programme of music was split into two parts with a ten minute interval to move the first-half’s grand-piano and set up for the accordion duets. Compared to the last pianist I went to see at the Castillo, Marcos played all six of his selections from memory; so the odd note awry is totally forgivable in my opinion. For me his most accomplished performance was Ludovico Einaudi’s I giorni which had me horripilating; though Marcos’ Tiersen piece, Comptine d’un autre été ran a close second.
Two folk left just before the end of the first half. I am sure if they hear about the second half they will now be kicking themselves. It was just fabulous. Traditional pieces from France, Argentina and of course Spain presented us with tangos (including "El tango de los tangos"), a paso doble and folk tunes. I have heard accordion previously; but I had never heard let alone seen a duet. Yes the odd note went the wrong way - winced at by my hypercritical neighbour (who decided to make a telephone call at one point during the playing!).
[Image description: the accordion play-off with fingers moving so fast they are blurred]
As soon as the last note was played of Anita there was an outpouring of cheering, clapping and nigh on every last soul rose almost as one to give the chaps a long and well-deserved standing-ovation. I was in there with my British bravos. Then the rhythmic clapping started and very vocal calls of something like “¡Orden!”, which was definitely the Spanish version of “Encore!” I had never experienced that before at any of the many concerts I have been to in Spain over the last dozen years or so.
The guys eventually came back out and did a piece of which I do not know the name, but which I recognised instantly, and I joined in the humming, etc. along with many of the audience. To leave a concert with a smile is common for me; but to actually be beaming during the concert, now that is a rarity. The music may not have been note-perfect; but the passion and love and joie de vivre shared through the music is a far more important gift to the folk who took part in the whole musical experience.
If this concert had been a CD, it would have been a definite buy-it-now. %D