Here are a few of the twelve Heitor Villa-Lobos Etudes performed by a simply outstanding young musician, Leonora Spagenberger. While I’ve heard some great guitarists perform these over the years, Leonora’s interpretations, despite her age (13) at the time of the recording, stand among the best of them. They are profoundly moving. This is inspiring on many levels. Bravissimo!
Marko Topchii seems to be taking the guitar world by storm. Hailing from Ukraine, Marko has amassed more than 80 awards (34 of them 1st prize) from the most important international guitar competitions in the world. I was recently pointed to a video that despite the casual setting of what looks like a green room and the mobile-phone-to-the-mirror technique of filming, displays a true force of nature as he rips through Joaquín Rodrigo’s Toccata. It is as if he chose the most violent wave to surf and simply flew over it.
If you have more time, here is a recent performance of Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Capriccio Diabolico from a performance in Italy.
Nadja Jankovic, a young and extremely talented guitarist hailing from Montenegro, interprets Joaquín Rodrigo’s Invocación y Danza brilliantly. From the haunting introduction to the rhythmic dance, Nadja invokes the spirit of this masterpiece with musical clarity and maturity that is seldom heard in such young players.