Miguel del Aguila: Orchestral Works

Augusta Symphony, Guillermo Figueroa (violin), Dirk Meyer

Catalog #: TROY1913
Release Date: December 1, 2022
Format: Digital

The Augusta Symphony, conducted by Dirk Meyer performs five works by Miguel del Aguila. Del Aguila's music exudes an exuberance that immediately grabs the ear upon first listening. Infectious Latin rhythms add a propulsive drive, while lush melodies are instantly memorable. Three-time Grammy nominated American composer Miguel del Aguila was born in Uruguay and has more than 130 compositions to his credit. There are more than 50 of his works that have been recorded. The Augusta Symphony is the premier professional orchestra for Augusta's River Region in Georgia and South Carolina. Led by German conductor Dirk Meyer, the orchestra presents classical, pops, and family concerts. Violinist Guillermo Figueroa is one of the most versatile and respected musical artists of his generation, renowned as a conductor, soloist, and concertmaster.


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Track Listing

Title Composer Performer
The Giant Guitar, Op. 91 Miguel Del Aguila Augusta Symphony; Dirk Meyer (conductor)
Salón Buenos Aires, Op. 102 Miguel Del Aguila Augusta Symphony; Dirk Meyer (conductor)
Violin Concerto, Op. 94 Miguel Del Aguila Augusta Symphony; Dirk Meyer (conductor); Guillermo Figueroa (violin)
Tensando, Op. 126 Miguel Del Aguila Augusta Symphony; Dirk Meyer (conductor)
The Fall of Cuzco, Op. 98 Miguel Del Aguila Augusta Symphony; Dirk Meyer (conductor)


  • Miguel Del Aguila (b. 1957) was born in Uruguay, but left for America in 1978 during the country’s repressive military rule. He pursued further musical studies in San Francisco and Vienna. Though his discography is large, this is the first album dedicated to his orchestral works. Aguila’s style has hints of Ginasteran modernism and Ravelian color, with inescapable nods to Piazzolla. It is often romantic and suave along the lines of classic film music. The most significant work here is the violin concerto (2007). Aguila describes the violinist as a traveler, moving thru the world with deepe-ing introspection. It opens with lush lyricism from the violin and sweeping, mysterious grandeur from the orchestra akin to a Rosza score, all written in the mode of a Latin dance. The violin plays over bassoons and pizzicato cello and bass in the melancholy, intimate II. A brief cadenza (III) launches into a dramatic (and perhaps autobiographical) finale, where the violin protagonist must contend with a home that is more violent than when he left it. To this end, the return of the sweeping passages from I is chilling and effective. Violinist Guillermo Figueroa is equal parts suave and dramatic, which is just what this piece needs. Several other works also have a modern South American identity and deal with the region’s turmoil. In `The Giant Guitar’ (2006) and the substantial tone poem The Fall of Cuzco (2009), traditional Andean melodies are subject to a sinister, dissonant undercurrent, later to erupt in violence. Salon Buenos Aires (2010) is a return to Latin dances and Hollywood glimmer. Each movement is modeled after a South American dance: samba, tango, and milonga. The sizable and memorable tango at its center emerges from a mysterious haze, as if from a memory. The recent `Tempering Drums’ (2020) is more abstract and rhythmic, with small, syncopated motifs slowly becoming more animated as the piece progresses, as do drum skins when played on. Even at its most dissonant, this is attractive and crowd-pleasing music…

    – American Record Guide

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