Curacao’s Randal Corsen
Sat Oct 7th, 2023, 8:00 PM – Behind the Dikes.
Behind our dikes there is a richly varied musical culture that incorporates style elements from geographically distant areas. World music, Cross-over, Fusion, are some of the umbrella terms. And if you zoom in on a small island like Curaçao, the music culture there also appears to be very diverse, with many international influences. Pianist and composer Randal Corsen grew up there. In addition to Afro-Caribbean elements, we hear jazz, classical, funk and rock in his music. We see this reflected in the naming of one of his groups – Symbiosis.
Randal Corsen came to the Netherlands at the age of 18, studied piano, after which his career took off quickly. His debut CD Evolushon was released in 2003, on which he can be heard with the Curaçao-Dutch vocalist Izaline Calister. The album received an Edison Music Award. You will be the first to hear about this from Rib’un Djadumingu. The piece does not immediately reveal itself at first glance. This is because of the fragmented opening theme, and also in the playing ‘over the bar line’. In the central part, both Corsen and tenorist Davis Sanchez play a long solo, ending in a climax. It’s worth re-hearing.
The subsequent No Bai – from the same album – is a duo with vocalist Izaline Calister, and taps into a different vein. Calister takes you smoothly into the melody with her restrained, somewhat introverted voice. Anyone who does not understand Papiamento is given the freedom to interpret meaning and emotion themselves.
Randal Corsen pays tribute to his great-great-grandfather, Joseph Sickman Corsen (1853-1911), who composed ‘classical’ solo pieces for piano. From the CD Corsen Plays Corsen you will hear two of the 23 compositions.
We close the hour with Laberinto by the Latin-jazz group Bye-Ya!, with Corsen at the piano. Here we are back to the complexity with which this programme opened. In the final movement of this piece, the spotlight is on the extended percussion group.
Listen to music! – even if this seems self-evident.
The full program is in the Guide.
Behind the Dikes – Hajé Nordbeck