JUSTIFICATION OF THE CHOICE
This chapter is analytical. It demonstrates that Mompou’s performance style is as important for the musical discourse as the actual compositions are. To underpin my argument I examine Mompou’s own recording of Cants Màgics (Ensayo label), which dates from 1974. It is worth mentioning that the choice of the piece has not been by chance, although any other recording of Mompou’s work would have been similarly valid to research his pianistic aesthetics.
Firstly, Cants Màgics (1919) is one of the first compositions that reflect Mompou’s personal language and his so-called primitivist style, something he would keep developing until the crowning moment of his career: the conception of the two books that constitute Música Callada (1951-1967). For this reason I consider Cants Màgics a key composition to be able to understand the essence of his work.
Secondly, Cants Màgics is a piece that does not intendedly contain folkloric tunes or other composers’ themes, unlike Variations on a Theme of Chopin (1957) or Cançons i danses (1918-1972). Consequently, Mompou’s way of performing them is less prone to copy other musician’s styles.
Lastly, Cants Màgics is a short piece consisting of five contrasting movements. Due to time constraints I found it convenient to select this work in order to perform a detailed yet varied study and hence avoid vagueness at all costs.
I organized this chapter in five sections, one for each movement. Each one of them consists of a musical analysis and a recording analysis. I also explain whether the former can be linked to the latter with the aim of establishing patterns.