Spanish Guitar Night: The Music of Maestro Francisco Bernier.

Last August 18, 2015, I was lucky enough to get invited to Maestro Francisco Bernier's one night only concert entitled Spanish Guitar Night. It was held at Ayala Museum lobby as part of the celebration of Philippine-Spain Friendship day.

The night started with a welcome remarks coming from Ms. Maria Serena Diokno, Chairman of National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP). Before Meastro Francisco Bernier, Adrik Cristobal set the mood by playing Jose Valdez' Kanayonan (based on bahay kubo) and Frederico Moreno Torroba's Madronos. There is no other performer perfect to open the concert night other than Adrik since he's currently pursuing his studies in the Conservatorio Manuel Castillo de Sevilla under Bernier. 

After setting the mood and showcasing Filipino talent with Adrik's performance, Maestro Bernier opened his first set with Fernando Sor's Theme and Variation Op. 9 followed by Joaquin Turina's Sonata Op 61 and Johan Sebastian Bach's Caiccona from Partite in D Minor n2 for Solo Violin BWV 1004. Everyone's in awe as the audiences indulge with authentic Spanish melod
ies and  skillfully crafted strums and plucks. It's like people has been transported to Spain to enjoy a romantic evening with the Maestro.

Opening the second set of his performance, he played Roland Dyens Saudade n3, Enrique Granados' Danza Espanola n5, Francisco Tarrega's Fantasia Sobre de La Traviata and Anton Garcia's masterpieces from Bernier's album Vademecum; Pequeno Estudio, Cancion, Divertimento, Berceuse and Aleluyatica. Truly, the night was one of kind and you'll see to each one's faces how music transcends and feeds the mind, body and soul. How I wish audience were allowed to have a glass of wine while enjoying Bernier's performance. It would be more magical for sure. Nevertheless, Spanish Guitar Night was a success.

I also got a chance to have a copy of Bernier's album entitled Vademecum which features the compositions of Anton Garcia Abril. The tracks on the album explores the guitar in contemporary terms with a wide range of pieces that exude melodic beauty and demonstrate the composers deep understanding of the guitar, its sonorities and techniques. No guitarist could be better equipped than Francisco Bernier to present this work on disc, a virtuoso of the guitar whose insight has been deepened through his friendship with the composer.

I enjoyed the rest of my night by playing this album as soon as I reached home. I brought a piece of Spain with me that any time of the day, I know I can travel back to Spanish Guitar Night with maestro Bernier.

Hasta la proxima!

Special thanks to Tito Toots for the invite.

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