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"Arrels" the first work for cobla by Joan Guinjoan

This past 5 April marked the much-lauded public premiere of the latest work by the composer, pianist and conductor Joan Guinjoan, Arrels (Fantasia per a cobla). Despite his age, the 76-year-old composer still approaches each new project with the enthusiasm of his youth. Arrels meant a great challenge for Guinjoan: to compose, without abandoning his style, a work for Cobla, a folk ensemble, which the composer said "has nothing to do with my world but I approached it with the utmost respect." The premiere took place at Barcelona’s Palau de la Música, in a concert by the Cobla Sant Jordi-Ciutat de Barcelona conducted by Josep Pons, also the first time he has worked an ensemble of this sort. It is a highly complex work divided into three movements: Recordant-se, Nostalgia and Reneixença. The work draws on broad range of influences: from the Easter cornets of the town of Ruidoms to jazz and other musical forms stored in the mind of the composer, all moulded in the avant-garde style of maestro Guinjoan. Both musicians and audience applauded the work as a fresh reworking of traditional styles.