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Amancio Prada (Meadows, Leon, 1943) is in Urueña, yesterday was busy with the water from the well. “It’s been four years of drought.” You have 71 years old and is in full possession of their faculties. I wonder if it is that great care has been taken. “Let’s say that I have not neglected-answer-. Or me I’ve taken care of carelessly. They say that the work is health”.

I wanted to ask You by Chicho Sanchez Ferlosio and his album of 2005, “Until another day, Chicho”. How do you engage in your relationship and what are your memories of him?

it Was Agustín García Calvo who spoke to me for the first time, Chicho, there in Paris, in the early 70’s. Began to rondarme the idea of putting music to some of the poems of Augustine. And asked me if I knew the songs by Chicho. I had no idea, the truth. But he gave me a tape, which I still have, I have not had a magnetofón in my life. To Chicho met him two or three years later, in the house of our dear friend, common, Carmen Martín Gaite. Carmen was sister-in-law of hers, big admirer of Chicho, and sang their songs that have that tone, that grace is so hard to achieve, and so we got singing down the aisle in the house of Doctor Esquerdo, 43: “By the way, comes, freedom, with a soldier in front and another behind”. And there began a long and fruitful faithful friendship until his death.

Decides to go to Paris because he won a contest.

I was studying in Valladolid and the last year I did an internship in Nancy, in the north, in July of ‘ 68, and I spent in Paris. I was fascinated by that. And instead of putting me to work, I decided to enroll in the Sorbonne. That summer I learned of a contest in Alar del Rey. Way from the university to pick up the title and I stood in front of a showcase of music and I saw a guitar golden, unattainable, because it was worth of 10,000 pesetas. Then, instead of going to Ponferrada, I caught a train to Alar del Rey. And I sang a song that had just compose verses of Rosalia, “To Havana”, the immigration of galicians to Cuba, and it turns out that I got the first prize. A medallion of gold, a biscuit with a dowel precious, the truth, I gave it to the queen of the holidays, I was so excited that I didn’t pay attention that it was an envelope that I got in the pocket. At the time I found the envelope, I opened it and had a 10,000 pesetas. So I went for the guitar that I opened that first fall of Paris.

“Rosalía de Castro has proved to be a gold mine. And St. John of the Cross, and Bécquer…”

In 1972, takes the stage of the theatre Bobinó opening the concert of George Brassens for three weeks.

Well, in those days there were cellars of poetry and the “houses of youth and culture” thanks to the minister of Culture that had France, André Malraux. I spent three weeks with Brassens and then with Juliette Gréco, and yes, it was just as well, as without wanting to. I had the feeling that he was following the path that I had dreamed of since I was a kid in my town. And I recorded my first album, Life and Death, in the 74. I had the opportunity to see many singers like Brassens, Ferré, Brel. But the roots of my poetry and my singing, I felt that they were outside, they were in Spain. And, at the end of five years, “the duration of a eternal love”, I came back to Spain.

is Already in the first album there are two songs of Rosalia and just after he dedicates an entire disk.

Rosalia yes, it has been the inspiration of my first songs. And it has proved to be a gold mine, because then later I published until eighteen songs in Resonances of Rosalia and I even have another one that is unpublished. Most of my discs are monographs. Now I’m finishing up recording an album dedicated to Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer. Also almost without wanting to. I suddenly remembered one of the first songs I did when I was studying piano, which was of Bécquer. And was there, in the background of my dark love. We’re mixing now the songs in Urueña with Luis Delgado, who is a musician accomplice, and with the contribution of the cellist Amaryllis Dueñas. And it’s going to go as well, guitar, voice and cello.

A concert of Amancio Prada in the decade of 1970

There is a claim of folklore gallego in “Carabel of Carabels”, where he speaks of a degradation of the cultural industry that seems irreversible.

Above all, the folklore. The village does not sing to you listen, he sings while he works, he sings when he goes for the field only and thus was born the popular song, and so picked it up fortunately the professor García Matos, in his Anthology of Spanish folklore. It is a wonder, because it tells the story of when still the protagonists were real. Then, Carabels are the songs that I remember from my childhood, the more he remembered, Carmen Martín Gaite, Calila for friends, and a wise republican who met in Segovia, a vagabond, Theophilus Caamaño, who had a great memory, and sang them very well. Then, in the 89, I recorded the stanzas Of sea and terra, which is like the second part. Machado said, “the songs are when sung by the people and has lost the name of the author”.

Discover the Lorca late, the of the “Sonnets of dark love”, on ABC.

it Came to pass that Maria Zambrano returned from his exile in Geneva. One day, I went to his house because he had promised to go to sing the Song. And there, in his house, where the smoke was white, his hair was white, smoke her on that sofa, asking myself, “how have you not killed after singing the Song?”, I says: “what are you going to compose after this?”. “Well I don’t know, the truth”, I replied. “I am looking for something that will make me take flight, but I can’t find it”. And, between the smoke those long cigarettes his, I said, “Well, you’ll find it, because I see above your head a dove.” I didn’t know where to hide. And in the silence that was created among those present, said: “Or maybe they are two”. The case is that I found a little time, in the cultural supplement of ABC, these sonnets of the dark love of Lorca newly recovered. And I found poetry the most endearing. And, yes, I needed to sing those poems. And I premiered at the Teatro María Guerrero. But that did not end the thing, because then I put music to the other five poems gallegos were missing. The best gift that the best poet of the TWENTIETH century we could do to Galicia.

The history of the “spiritual Canticle” begins in Paris in the 70’s and even gives a recital broadcast by Radio France.

Yes, but it was in 1973 when we made the first version complete, in Segovia, a city I fell in love with. The verses of Saint John of the Cross are palpable in his light. And in the church of San Juan de los Caballeros premiered in 77 the Song. And, then, has had many readings in a quartet and with the Orchestra and Chorus of Spanish radio & Television, directed by Fernando Velázquez with much success.