Every time I am asked to write or to talk about Maestro Bacalov my mind is crowded by a myriad of memories, emotions and experiences all lived in the space of just three years which, however, feels like decades.
Bacalov has changed the course of my artistic life. He brought new colours to it: soft and bright, but also sharp and harsh at times.
He knew how to be a friend and a rival at the same time, a teacher and a pupil. He was humble, yet competitive. Simple, but complex.
His passion for music and art was contagious. His spirit was young, modern, revolutionary.
If I had to name the one thing I miss the most about him that would be his curiosity, without a doubt. He was able to listen to us, young musicians, with the same rapture that a child would experience while listening to a fairy tale. It’s rare to be able to carry such quality, unscathed, till older age.
Looking back I can say that we wrote a beautiful page together in the story of our life and, still today, I feel but infinite gratitude towards him.
Like other very talented artists – I am thinking of pianists/composers such as Chick Corea and Keith Jarrett, who in addition to Jazz have also played and recorded classical music, or clarinetist Benny Goodman, a virtuoso of the ‘swing’ period who also played Mozart impeccably, or Daniel Baremboim, one of the world’s greatest conductors and pianists, who has recorded a CD dedicated to Tango and another to Brazilian folk music – Alberto Pizzo, a brilliant young Neapolitan pianist and composer, also travels different musical paths ranging from Jazz to Bach and Scarlatti, and writes refined compositions straddling pop/jazz and the so-called ‘crossover’; This eclecticism interested Publisher Bixio, La Agenzia Palco Reale and Sony Music, to produce this CD, starring Pizzo and the London Symphony.
As an arranger and conductor, I got to know Alberto’s remarkable qualities as a pianist and refined composer. The choice of pieces to be featured on this CD were the subject of a conversation between us, where I suggested to Alberto that we include some of his compositions that seemed appropriate for this project; and so I was able to appreciate other aspects of this artist’s personality, a capacity for reflection and listening not always found among young people.
It was a happy experience for me to work with the London Symphony, an ensemble of the highest level that understood my interpretative requests with immediacy and great professionalism. A joy.
1 Paris 2011
2 My Secret
4 Il Viaggio Dell’anima
5 After The Rain
6 Preludio N. 2
8 Valentine’s Day
10 Preludio N. 1
11 Sonata K. 87
12 Concerto N. 5 Bwv 1056, I
13 Concerto N. 5 Bwv 1056, II. Largo
14 Concerto N. 5 Bwv 1056, III. Presto
After the Rain