ClarinetFest 2019® Day 4: Españyid Recital
by Meghan Taylor, ClarinetFest® 2019 Writing Team
Españyid, a trio using two clarinets and classical guitar, performed on Saturday, July 27th at 4 pm during ClarinetFest®. This ensemble is known for its unique sound which blends Klezmer and Flamenco styles, producing some incredible new music. Members of Españyid include Meredith Gersten and Mike Gersten, clarinets, and Joey Grimaldi, classical guitar.
The first piece on the program was titled, “Oy Tate, es “La Feria” showcased this unique blend of musical styles particularly well. Arranged by Mike Gersten, the piece combines a Klezmer folk tune and a solo popular in the classical guitar repertoire. Españyid also gave the world premiere performance of The Butterfly and the Ocelot by Anne M. Guzzo during this performance. Guzzo composed this piece with the migratory patterns of both the butterfly and the ocelot in mind. As the performers travel the tumultuous land, the audience is reminded of how intense and dangerous migration can be, especially when man impacts these instinctual habits. As natives of McAllen, Texas, this theme is of particular importance to the ensemble because of the ongoing border crisis. Guzzo and Españyid recognized the importance of understanding the migration of both humans and animals and captured these ideas throughout the work.
The trio concluded their performance with an impressive work composed by Mike Gersten titled Diablos Rojos. This piece was inspired by some of the things the Gersten’s witnessed in Europe while traveling during the World Cup finals in 2018. While at ClarinetFest® 2018 in Belgium, the couple witnessed people chanting and singing in support of their beloved Red Devils. The excitement and support poured out from everyday peoples to the team inspired Gersten to write this piece for the ensemble.