Phillip de Fremery knows he is no composer, however two situations have developed which called him to write. The first of these involved his role as supporting guitarist for a dramatic reading of the Federico García Lorca play, Poet in New York (1984) at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. This reading was fulfillment in part of the Doctoral dissertation requirement of Leslie Stainton, who has since published Lorca, A Dream of Life. (579 pp.; Farrar, Straus, Giroux, 1999)
Long known as a performer of Spanish music, de Fremery soon found that there were three situations in the Lorca play for which he not only did not have anything suitable, he did not even know of anything in the classical guitar literature which was remotely suitable. As a result, these three pieces were written spontaneously on the guitar during the rehearsal process.
Entitled Music after Lorca, the short suite begins with Asesinado, which opened the play to a darkened house as the actors and actresses creep toward the guitarist, center stage, each sharing in the speaking of Lorcas poem by that name; then moves to Aña Maria Dalí , which was written to complement her two brief appearances, again in a darkened house under a single spotlight; and concludes with Duende, which was written to mirror Lorcas feelings as he was coming to the realization that he was going to have to return to Spain after his year in New York and Vermont.
The existence of these pieces is not altogether a mystery. Between 1970 and 1980, de Fremery came to the conclusion that if he was going to play any Spanish music at all he was going to have to come to terms with El Arte. He spent hours every day listening to all available recordings of the great cantaores, dancers and guitarists who were the acknowledged leaders of the scene between 1920 and 1970. It was from this experience and inspiration that he drew for the creation of this suite. Performance time, about eight minutes.
Star of the County Down, traditional Irish, was arranged for solo guitar after de Fremery heard his cousin Hank Bradley and Cathy Whiteside perform the piece via recorded cassette for the wedding of Skip and 'Tricia Clayton in 1996. Performance time, about four minutes.