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Under the Parish Festoons by Juan Gaspar

Under the Parish Festoons by Juan Gaspar

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"There are three good reasons for working through this book. First reason: the music is interesting, pleasurable and entertaining; second reason: ...study material for a multitude of tecnical developments...; third reason:...substantial complete "suite" worthy of performance.

Each (movement) demonstrates the characteristics of the title very well. Prayer is for me the gem of the collection; a beautiful bit of writing..."
Steve Marsh - Classical Guitar Magazine - September 2008

A great many of the concerts that Gaspar has played throughout Mexico have often been in a church or chapel. These are often decorated and festooned with multicolored banners for religious festivities; the activities carried out under these festoons make for a rich variety of ideas for musical thought. The six movements of Under the Parish Festoons develop some of these themes.

Dawn Bells (Campanas al Alba) can be heard early in the morning calling people to the church.

Teponaxtles are pre-Hispanic percussion instruments which are still sometimes played outside churches, though this ancient tradition seems to be disappearing.

Prayer (Plegaria) We enter the church and do solemnly pray.

Listones and huipiles are the traditional ribbons and hand embroidered blouses worn by the women whose beauty makes the composer sigh.

La China is the name given to a Chinese girl who came to the New Spain during the Colonial period. Many places have a statue of this girl who long ago influenced the style of dress today identified as "typically Mexican". Though depicted in gay apparel, surely she must have longed for her homeland.

The Fountain of Saint Michael (La Fuente de San Miguel) is the water fountain across from the cathedral of Puebla. Most churches have a fountain outside, usually in the town square.

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