The young Uruguayan percussionist Ismael Dilon plays Papandopulo!


Thanks to the young and talented percussionist, Ismael Dilon, Boris Papandopoulo’s Concerto for Xylophone and String Orchestra began its wonderful Uruguayan story! Having discovered the work in the interpretation of Ivana Kuljerić Bilić, who included it on her compact disc Follow me published by the Cantus record company, Ismael Dilon performed the work for the first time in Montevideo, on December 14, 2022, with the piano accompaniment of the pianist Andrea Cruz, and a partial recording is available on the artist’s YouTube channel.

With the Papandopoulo Concerto, the young artist also presented himself at the Concurso de Jóvenes Solistas competition on March 3, 2023, and – won! The competition, organized by the Uruguayan National Youth Orchestra (La Orquesta Juvenil Nacional del Sodre), one of the best youth orchestras in South America, which has so far performed on numerous prestigious concert stages such as the Berlin Philharmonic Hall, Auditorio Nacional de Música in Madrid, Kennedy Center in Washington, etc. – unfortunately, it was closed to the public.

As the winner of the competition, the talented Ismael Dilon will perform the piece with the National Youth Orchestra (La Orquesta Juvenil Nacional del Sodre) under the baton of Maestro Ariel Britos, on October 21, 2023, in the Sala Eduardo Fabini del Auditorio Nacional. Then the Uruguayan audience will hear the Concerto for the first time in an orchestral version!

This Concert has something special, and I can’t believe it hasn’t been performed in Latin America yet. Some of the other xylophone concertos and concertinos seem a bit shallow to me. But this one seems intriguing and meaningful. It is characterized by richness of sound and color. But the two middle movements enchanted me the most. I think that I have never seen or heard such expressiveness in a piece for xylophone before, and that is what I was missing, Ismael Dilon told the editors of the Croatian Music Information Center while communication about the sheet music.

Ana Unkić / Jelena Vuković

Photo by: Tarumán Corrales


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