Martin Georgiev: Violin Concerto
Covent Garden Soloists: Vasko Vassilev (violin), Andriy Viytovoch (viola), Alberto Ferres Torres (cello), Tony Hougham (double bass)
Recording: Valencia, Spain and London, England (June-September 2020) – 20’40
Trittico Recording [Catalogue number n/a*] (digital release only) – Booklet in English
Though today’s angst can be felt in all corners of our planet, reactions and responses to the pandemic are vastly different. In this case, Martin Georgiev’s reflections toward the virus were to compose the unusual Violin Concerto, a mélange of searing and oft-untamed commentaries, to pay tribute to those men and women who have fought and are currently fighting valiantly against this plague. This œuvre is quite opportune since the acute musical transmogrifications, figuratively-speaking, closely match that to Covid-19’s newly discovered strains in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil.
With incorporation of three primary ideas traversing four modes of expression, the Concerto houses plenty of dimension and whetted formulation. Vasko Vassilev carries the predominant momentum in all 12 sections; however, occasionally Andriy Viytovoch’s viola, for example, aids in stirring up the chasms, evidenced in “Frozen Path” which briskly crescendos to a frazzled completion. “Missing You” seizes feelings of a lost one with pivotal echoes reaching back to the viola and cello...a sobering, chilling reminder. Each passage has defining moments of strife and struggle.
This music is enigmatic and teeters on an axle of unquenchable tension which speaks to the composer’s very point. To quote Martin Georgiev, “The result [Violin Concerto] is a recording of 12 segments which can be enjoyed as recorded, or in any other sequence or combination.” Nothing in the liner notes, however, coherently explains segmentation, delineation nor methodical progression, etc. Ambiguity abounds while atmospheric linings are liquidly transparent...take your pick for your awakening. As the reality of lethal molecules travels indiscriminately, so, too, does the pathway of musical discovery. The mind is an independent compartment, and, thus, M. Georgiev leaves the listener at liberty for free-thinking.
Martin Georgiev’s music is weighty, frequently strident, powerfully dense and a hard listen. Meant as a “stand-alone” piece and not intended as a commercial physical release*, the Violin Concerto awaits personal analysis.