Amic, Amat

Loading tracks...

Amic, Amat
Picap, 2004

The origins of the album Amic, Amat, dedicated in part to the short verses of Ramon Llull adapted by Father Cinto Verdaguer can be found in two places very far apart: the village of Folgueroles where the house-museum of Jacint Verdaguer is, and Damascus, where Maria del Mar Bonet met the musicians of the Cham Ensemble of Damascus when she presented the previous album, Raixa, in the Syrian capital, in the gardens of the Azem Palace.

Amic, amat is the most mystical record by Maria del Mar Bonet. Ricard Torrents wrote in the booklet of the album: And now the symposia of the Llull-Verdaguer pearls become more complex with the voice of Maria del Mar Bonet. The singer’s action is neither an addition nor an adherence. If Llull did more than just “translate” the Song of Solomon and if Verdaguer did not confine himself to “versifying” Llull, Maria del Mar Bonet has done much more than put Verdaguer to music. Llull and Verdaguer work on the singer and the singer works on the two poets to unite all three and create a new, joint work of art, more complex and richer. A polyphonic work in musical terms, a poly-poetic work in literary terms.

Luis Delgado accompanied the singer in the musical direction of the Cham Ensemble group from Damascus, a group formed by:  Moslem Rahal, Jamal al Sakka, Maemon Rahl, Mohamad Itmeh, Mhd Muwaffar Alzahabí, Samer Aljandalil and Raafat Kassem. The other musicians taking part in the record were: Javier Mas, Feliu Gasull, Dimitri Psonis, Dani Espasa, Jordi Gaspar, Roger Blavia and Jaume Cortadellas, as well as the Coral Cantiga directed by Josep Prats. The musical arrangements were by Luis Delgado on the songs played by the Cham Ensemble of Damascus, the others by Feliu Gasull, Javier Mas or Dimitri Psonis.

The tour of the album Amic, amat was very intensive and occupied 2004, 2005 and 2006:

On the 22nd of July 2004 she presented the album in the Teatre Grec in Barcelona in the city’s Festival Grec . In Mallorca she gave the presentation in the Monastery of the Real giving support to the “Save the Real” movement, in defence of the monastery that was threatened by the island’s speculators. In December she presented it at the SGAE headquarters in Valencia. Many places in the Spanish State and Catalonia were able to enjoy the show, which also reached the international sphere: on the 1st of September in the Kulturzentrum Pavillon in Hannover; in November the same year in the Book Fair of Guadalajara, Mexico and she began the tour of the USA that took them to Chicago, California – Santa Cruz-, and would continue in the summer of 2005 in Los Angeles, Seattle, Boston, New York in Central Park from the 28th to 31st of July respectively, until doing the concert in the city of Providence on the 5th of August, where the mayor proclaimed that from then on the “5th of August would be Maria del Mar Bonet day” in Providence. In September 2005 she sang in Athens, in October in Damascus, once again in the Azem Palace, and in December in Alexandria.

In 2006 she returned to Damascus, Syria. A concert had also been scheduled in Aleppo which was cancelled due to military conflicts on the border that forced her to return. In March of that year she sang in the Auditorium of Barcelona and in May in the Teatro Español in Madrid. She sang in the Festival Frigiliana 3 culturas in August and in December in Berlin, in the Passion Kirche. In March 2007 she sang in the Festival de Modena, Italy, also with Amic, amat.

In February 2005 she received the City of Barcelona Prize. In July 2006 she received the Gold Medal of the City of Barcelona “for her cultural and civic contribution to the world of the song, for her desire to write about, diffuse and strengthen the common roots of Mediterranean music “.

Photos in Syria, Damasc, 2004
by Juan Miguel Morales

Photos of the rehearsal with the Cham Ensemble de Damasc,
Syria, 2004, by Juan Miguel Morales

Graphic Documentation

Concert Amic, Amat
July 22, 2004

Previous        Next