Monday, April 15, 2024
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Symphony Orchestra prepares to record repertoire of Puerto Rican composers

Without a doubt, the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra (OSPR) is in one of its best moments, being recognized among the best in the Caribbean and Latin America. This level has been achieved with a lot of work, effort and dedication on the part of all the musicians that make up this group that is celebrating its 65th anniversary.

In that sense, since its main director, Maximiano Valdes, He took the reins of the Symphony 15 years ago, his main mission was to build an orchestra that would reach a higher quality than it had when the maestro with an international career arrived on the island in 2008.

“If I leave this orchestra here with the general awareness that it is one that does its job well, that has musical discipline, that has knowledge and that has musical priorities, for me, my job is done”, commented Valdés, who is a native of Santiago, Chile. “Now, what is the anguish of this? That music is ephemeral and remains in memory. Therefore, my desire is to do a recording project of the Puerto Rican repertoire that I have conducted and that has been created in these 15 years.”.

Maximiano Valdés, principal conductor of the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra. (David Villafane/Staff)

For the director, it is extremely important to leave a musical legacy of Puerto Rican composers who have been part of the Symphony Orchestra’s repertoire for the past two decades, but which have not been recorded, as is the case with the works of Rafael Aponte, Héctor Campos-Parsi, Ernesto Cordero, Roberto Sierra, Alberto Rodríguez, Carlos Alberto Vázquez, Carlos Cabrera and William Ortizamong others.

“During my entire career I have traveled a lot and directed in many countries, so I have realized that all countries compete to assert their own culture. For this reason, the great nations in musical matters such as Italy, France, Germany, Austria and Russia have left their great composers as an example of the level to which their societies reached in terms of artistic creativity. I don’t see any reason why we can’t do it in Puerto Rico.“, highlighted Valdés, who was chief conductor of the Principality of Asturias Orchestra before assuming his role in Puerto Rico.

Maestro Valdés is convinced that Puerto Rico, thanks to its composers, could have a global presence in terms of how instrumental and classical music is made. “I think we have to keep that in mind, we have to compete and we have to do it with the certainty that we have the musical quality and the talents that convinced me to come here to Puerto Rico in the first place”added the chief director of the OSPR.

A complex but very valuable project

As part of the process of recording the music of these Puerto Rican composers, Valdés hopes to have the help of OSPR members, as well as the community in general, due to the high production costs that this entails.

“We are now talking about the financial conditions, since this is something very expensive. We already have a coach and we defined a period in the calendar during this season to do it. “Once we can reach financial agreements, the idea is to do a concert and record it, they are live recordings, with the intention of distribution worldwide and that this will help the orchestra become known much more,” he explained.

For Valdés, this would be the result of many years of growth that the OSPR has experienced and would perfectly exemplify the path to follow for the future. “I think we have built a first-class orchestra that is an indisputable institution. In Puerto Rico it occupies a preferential place and is a point of reference among the orchestras of the Caribbean and America. Looked at from the outside, the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra has a very important place that, without a doubt, greatly gives prestige to Puerto Rican culture.”, concluded the experienced musical director.

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