Books and Other Things

Books and Other Things
By David Huerta

Orpheus, Adam and the children

The lullabies and nursery rhymes are a very rich, full resonance-irradiation of our mental and sensitive world. When we hear these melodies, almost instantly evoke a scene, rambling or simple, our first experiences. That means that such music is a kind of effective way to go deep in our memory.

Do not forget that memory- the most important of the Muses, the mother of all others, called by the old-Mnemosyne is the main creator of art. Without memory, no music or poetry is possible. Hence the value of collections of tunes for children, a task that has been consecrated, with admirable passion, the Mexican composer-performer and more by token-cellist Pilar Gadea.

The first musician and the first poet were one person: the Greek Thrace called Orpheus, whose tragic story is one of the enduring themes of the classical canon. This means that Orpheus can be seen (should say “heard”) as a songwriter, author of lyrics and music, and therefore, the mythical ancestor of all the world songs composers, from Schubert to Gabilondo Soler, Monteverdi Pilar Gadea. Or if you like, its patron saint.

The so called effect Orpheus is the effect produced by the music of the poet-singer of Thrace, was that the mountains inclined , and the rivers freeze, to pay attention to the melodic flow, the course of its waters. Nature was subdued, in a state of trance, listening to Orpheus with his lyre and his voice.

Something similar happens with all of us stop to listen carefully, we pause in our routine activities-when they come to our ears the notes of music that moves us, excites us, makes us think and remember. The Orphic effect of ¨violonchelo de colores, that Pilar Gadea and the great team of musicians who accompany her on this wonderful adventure, is precisely this: we are obliged to suspend what we are doing to listen with pleasure.

Someone has said, inconsolable and memorably, that there is no haven to the lost paradise, perhaps referring to the issue of “lost childhood”, who is not obviously to the children themselves. I do not know if paradise is forever lost and out of reach for those that are no longer children but I do know, however, that music is so much like paradise that is easily confused, the music has that Adamic quality that gives meaning and direction to the Orphic power. Adam and Orpheus in it together: the paradise of childhood, the delight of the senses, evoke the pleasures of the mind. Children’s songs possess those qualities. We can see again, with a happiness that can not be suppressed, in the work of Pilar Gadea and with her colleagues who have made it possible.

One of the songs is titled “Open and Close.” It consists of simple instructions for playing the cello, this instrument with a deep and noble voice, capable of infinite delicacy. It’s one of my favorite songs. The letter explains that the hands of the performer must learn to talk to the musical instrument. I think a beautiful idea, which is contained in a song whose form, whose sounds and voices, the magnificent voice of Encarnación Vázquez-are entirely in agreement, in harmony (as in a considerable degree of harmony is), with these instructions: song itself is already part of that dialogue, the conversation between the performer, his instrument, the singer, and the audience. You can hardly ask for more of artistic creation.

Pilar Gadea’s work and his collaborators in this superb album are a measure of all the good we can expect from Mexican artists in these times, as difficult as unfortunately we know, for culture, and especially for its foothills creative. But do not get distracted with the news, because it is true, as the Chinese proverb says, that all humans have touched them, throughout history, tough times. Much better for us to approach this work, dedicated to children, by musicians of our country. The C.D “violonchelo de colores” has sufficient doses of Orphic and Adam, play and leisure, to make us forget pain and help us remember and live the time of our happiness.
Libros y Otras Cosas