GUITAR FESTIVAL – Pepe Romero and Yamandu Costa – 4.5K

10340166_666396830075465_7602581529100756555_nBy Peter Maddern

While last night’s concert in the Festival Theatre may have been billed as mostly about maestro Pepe Romero, patrons are likely to also long remember the opening three pieces played solo by Brazilian Yamundu Costa; the first with an almost ferocious and unsettling verve, the second with such deft pulses of fallow and frenzy before his American Lullaby brought us all back to ground.

Costa works his instrument like a vibrating weapon, guttural and frenetic, his head bobbing like a swan’s as his slightly dishevelled appearance, complete with rainbow slippers worn sockless, lets his unique style complete the package.

In contrast, the Spaniard Romero was immaculately presented in a tuxedo, with gold chain, and took to his seven strings as if a surgeon, focused on the precision of his fingers as his nose and his guitar’s neck became barely separated. Whereas the pieces played by Costa with the Adelaide Art Orchestra tended to being fluffy, Pepe Romero cast a spell on his audience with their aid in Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez, with the second movement, the Adagio a glorious ten minutes of swoon.

For the road he delivered Francisco Tarrega’s tremolo classic Recuerdos de la Alhambra. It wrapped up a brilliant night of some of the finest guitar playing Adelaide has ever seen.

Kryztoff Rating  4.5K

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