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date: 04 June 2020

Guerrini, Guidolocked

  • John C.G. Waterhouse

Extract

(b Faenza, Sept 12, 1890; d Rome, June 14, 1965). Italian composer, conductor and critic. He studied at the Bologna Liceo Musicale with Torchi and Busoni. After teaching in Bologna (1920–24) and Parma (1925–8), he became the director of the Florence Conservatory (1928–47), the Bologna Conservatory (1947–9) and the Conservatorio di S Cecilia (1950–60). His earlier music combines high seriousness, at times somewhat academic, with luxuriant chromatic harmony reminiscent of Bax or, more significantly, Alfano. The textures and orchestration sometimes suggest Strauss, as does Guerrini’s interest, around 1920, in the symphonic poem; and there are indications, too, of Ravel's influence. The most substantial and imaginative of his early works is his second published work in the genre, L’ultimo viaggio d’Odisseo, which shows his harmony and orchestration at their most evocative. Also notable, in this early period, are the chamber compositions: the Violin Sonata is typical, combining succulent chromaticism with reiterative thematic developments. In time Guerrini’s academicism grew more pronounced, while his tendency to romantic indulgence was tempered by a new, architectonic sobriety. His best work after ...

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