One of the most original groups to emerge on the Canadian music scene, Forestare guitar ensemble returns with Douze guitares à Paris, a tribute to French music that is as unique as the ensemble’s boundary-pushing vision. Works by Impressionist masters Claude Debussy and Maurice Ravel share the program with compositions by contemporary guitarists Roland Dyens and Arnaud Dumond.
Debussy and Ravel introduced many of the compositional elements still used by guitar composers today: timbres, textures, and whole-tone scales are a perfect fit with the instrument’s poetic qualities. On this album we hear two of the best-known works from French Impressionism, Debussy’s Suite bergamasque and Ravel’s Ma mère l’Oye, in arrangements for guitar ensemble.
French guitarist Roland Dyens was among the most gifted composers of his generation. His work Hamsa for guitar orchestra is considered to be one of the cornerstones in the repertoire for this type of ensemble.
Rounding out the program are two works by Arnaud Dumond: Lumières sur le Saint-Laurent a long, progressive fresco for solo electric guitar and classical guitar ensemble inspired by the music of Pink Floyd, and Allegro barbaro. Scored for 10 guitars, double bass and two soloists, this virtuosic, energetic, and stylish work is the album’s grand finale.