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PJM

DISCOS

A SOLO

Author: Translation of Sara Raposo

04 jun 2017


Sérgio Carolino presents Super Alive! with Portuguese music

The record is Japanese, but the music is Portuguese. With the project Yamaha Tuba Duo, where he plays with Shimpei Tsugita (tuba), Rena Hashimoto (piano) and Taro Someya (percussion), Sérgio Carolino challenged several composers to write music for this formation - the majority being Portuguese. The record was released in 2016 and has pieces written by Luís Cardoso, Amílcar Vasques Dias, Andreia Pinto-Correia, Ivan Moody, Kohei Nishishita, Jorge Prendas, Daniel Martinho and Jim Self.

 

The talent and work of the Portuguese tubist is well known on an international level. Apart from his diversified interpretations, from a classical repertoire to the purest jazz and improvised music, Carolino has become prominent for his dynamic action in contemporary music as well. There are over 200 works written for his many projects and nearly 50 records released. In 2016, he released four records: "Faraway, Nearby" with Conical Brass - Jeff Nelsen (horn) and Telmo Marques (piano), and pieces by Telmo Marques, David Gillingham, Lon W. Chaffin and Gary Kulesha, produced by Afinaudio; "Tubax", a duo with and produced by Mário Marques (saxophone), and pieces by Howie Smith, Petri Keskitalo, John Zorn, Ennio Morricone, Jon Hansen and Jérèmie Dufort; "Moderato Tangabile", with original works by Daniel Schvetz, produced by Afinaudio; and lastly "Super Alive!", a project with Yamaha Tuba Duo, a Japanese production by Cryston.

In early 2017, "Deep in the Forest" was already completed, with the Duo TUBAB, including original music by both musicians - Sérgio Carolino and Jorge Queijo - produced by José Diogo Neves. Furthermore, until the end of the year, more projects will be recorded and released, among them "TransAtlantic Tuba Connection", with Mike Forbes (tuba) and Pedro Silva (drums), produced by José Lourenço.

 

The work by Luís Cardoso received an award from the International Tuba Euphonium Association

"Super Alive!" was born during a tour in Japan, organized by Yamaha. Carolino made sure to include Portuguese music on the record: "We have amazing composers. Our music is very good!"

It didn't take long until it paid off. The work "Abbas Alcobatia" (The Abbot from Alcobaça) by Luís Cardoso won the Harvey Phillips Award Prize for Excellence in Composition, in the category Tuba-Euphonium Ensemble, a distinction given by the International Tuba Euphonium Association, during the Conference in 2016, at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in the United States.

The premiere was at the Phoenix Hall, in Osaka (Japan), on November 5, 2015, by Sérgio Carolino and Shimpei Tsugita (tubas) and Rena Hashimoto (piano), which had been pre-recorded at Yamaha Concert Hall in Ginza, Tokyo.

 

"work with the composers and develop something new"

Apart from the "mission" to spread Portuguese music across borders, he also makes sure to choose a different repertoire, one he can play with other tubists, seeing as there is only one tuba in orchestras: "If I want to play with my friend from the London Philharmonic Orchestra, there is no repertoire. I started asking for commissions, which have been having great success, because there is a lot of people playing them now with other friends from other orchestras. We are always alone, but now we have a repertoire to play with our friends."

He says he likes to "work with the composers and develop something new". And that he doesn't like to give his opinion often because "the composers know what they're doing perfectly well": "I never say no, because I want to try playing what they created. Writing with the composer is also a way of letting them create, and do so in their own way! It's challenging, but it's the only way to develop the instrument when it comes to an interesting repertoire. Playing music in an obvious way doesn't hold any interest."

Thus, he defends that the composer cannot be limited to one instrument and gives the following examples: "In the past, Prokofiev and Wagner wrote pieces which the musicians at the time could not play, but today it is possible. They were visionaries, they already knew what the instrument could do and that it would be possible to play it in the future. When Shostakovsky wrote Cello Concerto, it should have been impossible to play, but he also wanted to explore with Rostropovich."

 

"each record has its own concept and should be personalized"

The production of a CD should also be unique: "For me, the project of recording includes composers, other musicians, designers, sound engineers, and so on. We always want more, we want to play well, but each record has its own concept and should be personalized, because the music was made and chosen with the project in mind. It's something artistic and not a business".

He confirms that there is little to no profit in selling CDs, but there are other advantages: "We use the records as an invite to try and sell the concert. If people like the concert, they would also like to take a record home, so they buy it and get an autograph - it's more about the moment itself. It is also good for the composers, who see their music registered and recorded. What they want is for their music to be heard!"

 

A "very special" project with former students

Carolino goes back to Japan in June for a new tour with Shimpei Tsugita and he let us know that he has new commissions and recordings planned.

He has also scheduled a recording of a very special album, with some of his former students - Romeu Silva, Adélio Carneiro, João Aibeo, Luís Oliveira, Xavier Novo, Ricardo Carvalhoso and Ricardo Antão are already confirmed. The CD will have new works by Eurico Carrapatoso, Luís Cardoso, Amílcar Vasques Dias, Eugénio Amorim, Telmo Marques, Mico Nissim (France) and Howie Smith (USA).

"It's a very special project, because I accompanied these students, most of them from a young age. I saw them grow as men and evolve as musicians until they became professionals, teachers, parents, winning international contests, joining several orchestras... I feel like they are a part of me and for whom I gave a lot of my time and energy, wisdom and experience", he says.

The works were commissioned according to the "personality, style and sound of each one" of his former students: "I think I will bring out the best, musically and artistically, from each one of them and they will be more comfortable in 'their field'!"

 

"so let it not be through music that more [problems] are created"

In July, he will be in Chicago recording with Gene Pokorny, the main tubist at Chicago Symphony Orchestra, who also has works for two tubas and piano, commissioned to Luís Cardoso and Eurico Carrapatoso (Portugal), Torstein Aagaard-Nilsen and Kjell Mork Karlsen (Norway), Low W. Chaffin (USA) and Paul Terracini (Australia).

Sérgio Carolino believes that "one of the definitions of music is to unite people". Consequently, he asks that "people have a good attitude, work more in teams, remain humble and eager to learn".

"Listen to music, attend concerts, read books, watch good films, be literate because we can't let ignorance settle in this new society, specially in our country, where people need to stay together – we are few but if we're divided and there is no unity, and people don't work with positivity, we won't get far. We already have plenty of problems, so let it not be through music that more are created", he suggests.

Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino with Shimpei Tsugita
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino with Shimpei Tsugita
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino with Shimpei Tsugita
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  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
  • Sérgio Carolino
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