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David Heyes

Simón García: Concertino No. 1 for double bass & piano

Simón García: Concertino No. 1 for double bass & piano

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About the Concertino

Concertino No.1 was written in 2011 and was originally for a solo double bass and double bass quartet, where the quartet takes part in the orchestra. This is a very unusual instrumentation and it was written for a double bass chamber music concert by the Spanish Radio-Television Orchestra which never took place. It is dedicated to my good friend, Damian Arenas, a bassist with the orchestra.

Written in a tonal and accessible style, sometimes with the cool sound of film music, there are three contrasting movements. The first is a journey through different tonal centers with melodies encompassing deep energy and lyricism. The powerful tuttis and harmonies help to 'transport you to mysterious and fantastic worlds.' The second movement is more serene, with a Baroque-like introduction, developing into a drama produced by its harmony and rhythmic hemiolas. The final movement is in a rondo form, with its principal melody repeated a number of times, and both the melodies and tuttis are full of great rhythmic energy and momentum. There are echoes of Piazzolla and Stravinsky in its neo-classical phrasing. [Simón García]

Concertino No.1 was premiered in Copenhagen's Royal Opera House on 17 August 2012 by Thomas Martin (double bass) and piano. The orchestral version was premiered on 29 October 2012 by Diego Zecharies (double bass) in Salamanca (Spain) with the OSDA Orchestra.

Concertino No.1 was awarded an Honourable Mention in the International Society of Bassists 2012 Composition Competition. Robert Black commented: 'Concertino No.1 for solo double bass and double bass quartet, by Simón García, would be a lot of fun to play. In the first movement, the insistent rhythmic accompaniment of the quartet provides a nice foil for the cantabile melodies in the solo bass part. Written in a tonal language, this Allegro moderato is full of excitement and drama. A slow Andante follows that has a restrained Baroque feel. As expected, there is a clear distinction between the melodic solo bass and the accompanying quartet. Movement 3 returns to a similar but different rhythmic and dramatic feel as we heard in the first movement. Concertino No.1 is a substantial work at 15 minutes.'

Concertino No.1 is available with piano accompaniments for both solo and orchestral tuning.

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About the Composer

Bassist and composer Simón García was born in Mugardos (Spain) in 1977 and graduated in double bass from the Conservatorio Superior of Salamanca. He has worked as a double bassist in the Royal Orchestra of Galicia, having also performed in many orchestras throughout Spain, and is the bassist in the Symphony Wind Orchestra of A Coruña.

His music has been performed in Mexico, Venezuela, Uruguay, Denmark, Spain, Japan, Italy, Austria, Germany, Canada, USA, and the UK by The Bass Gang, Bass Instinct, and Il Quint-etto, amongst others, and some of his music was used as teaching material in the 2011 ISB Year of Collaborative Music.

Simón García’s music is lively, jazzy, and rhythmic, with great forward momentum and drive. Accessible for players and audiences alike, he writes colorful music of distinction and energy, employing the entire range of the double bass.


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