Isaac Albéniz’s masterpiece, the “Iberia” suite for piano, is a series of twelve picturesque pieces evoking the Spanish landscape and it is based -more or less- on traditional dance rhythms and folk material.
Accomplished piano players agree that Iberia is one of the most difficult pieces in the repertoire, requiring immense strength from its interpreters, chewing-gum-hands and divine inspiration.
Claude Debussy once said of Iberia: “Never has music achieved such diversified, such colorful impressions: one’s eyes close, as though dazzled by beholding such a wealth of imagery.”
I hope you won’t close your eyes now. If you keep them open you’ll see in the pics below the tranquil and wonderful village of Camprodón (province of Girona). The great composer Isaac Albéniz was born here on May 29, 1860.
The village of Camprodón has not any special feature: no awesome Gothic cathedral, no famous open-air market, no world-class museum, no legendary ruins … It is just an agreeable, pleasant, copacetic, hunky-dory, ducky, wonderful village, where life passes by at a leisurely pace.
The word “Camprodón” comes from the Latin “Campus Rotondus”, which means “Round Field”. Don’t ask me why the Romans called this little corner of their mighty Imperium Campus Rotondus. The only “rotondus” (round) things I know from Camprodón are the fantastic cookies produced by the old “Birba” artisans.
Not only cookies. In fact, Camprodón is a paradise for gourmets and for gourmands. For example, this little gourmand (pic below) seems truly interested in this butcher’s shop.
The magnificent Pyrenees Mountains surround Camprodón. That means lots of mountaineering, skiing, climbing, hiking, trekking, bicycling, wandering, musing, contemplation, meditation, cogitation … and all these physical, mental and spiritual activities indefectibly make you hungry. Don’t worry: outstanding sausages, meats, veggies and pastries are sold in this village. Camprodón is self-sufficient at this regard.
As I told you before, Camprodón has no awesome Gothic cathedral, but it has a nice Romanesque-Gothic-Baroque church called Santa María …
This village has also a nice Romanesque monastery: Sant Pere, consecrated in the year 1168 …
The “Ter” River crosses Camprodón. The river’s birth is located not very far away from the village, at an approximate altitude of 2400 meters (7874 feet), at the foot of a glacial cirque in the Pyrenees Mountains (what a nice trek!). The river follows a course of 210 Kilometers (130 miles) and discharges into the Mediterranean Sea, into the middle of my beloved Costa Brava. One of these days I should post something about this river …
By the way, an impressive medieval bridge crosses the Ter River in Camprodón:
Taking into account that the villagers of Camprodón enjoy the purest air, eat well, walk through beautiful forests, contemplate, meditate and cogitate a lot, as a result they love to chat among themselves. I am not talking about online chatting; I am talking about al fresco chatting …
Well, I don´t know what more to say about Camprodón …
Definitively I don’t know what more to say about this charming village. I’m suffering from a complete lack of inspiration. Look at this clothing store:
The guy of the b/w portrait to the right of the shop is Isaac Albéniz. He certainly had tons of inspiration. And he still inspires the whole village of Camprodón.
I like his music very much.
Above: “In this house was born Isaac Albéniz”
There is a museum in Camprodón dedicated to Isaac Albéniz (temporarily closed):
I’m about to finish this uninspired post. Camprodón is a very nice village. Isaac Albéniz was a great composer. Isaac Albéniz was born in Camprodón.
I think I finish this post just now. I’m going to listen to my old and beloved Cd of Albéniz’s Iberia, played by the late Alicia de Larrocha. That is inspiration.