Joana Otxoa de Alaiza and Alex Gurrutxaga have created twenty piano pieces and texts that enrich each other
There are projects that form and mature layer by layer on a very solid foundation. One of them is ‘Txori kantazale.’ Xabier Lete’s line ‘album.
Published by Aztarna publishing house, ‘Txori kantazale’ is the latest collaboration between pianist Jone Otxoa de Alaiza (Astigarraga, 1988), pianist and professor at the Vitoria-Gasteiz Conservatory of Music, and Alex Gurrutxaga (Zarautz, 1988), PhD in Basque literature and professor at the UPV / EHU. He has a rich background: after several years of studying and cataloging the archive of Xabier Lete and Lourdes Iriondo, Gurrutxaga presented his doctoral thesis ‘Xabier Lete’s Poetics: An Analysis of Variations and a Reading of Evolution’ in 2020; ‘Txori kantazale’ project, shared with Otxoa de Alaiza, which received the Eusko Ikaskuntza-Laboral Kutxa award in the same year; Gurrutxaga’s’ Xabier Lete. Homeland Poet Singer ‘essay, 2021 Euskadi Award …
It is in line with academic rigor, outreach and creativity, led by ‘Txori kantari’, Gurrutxaga and Otxoa de Alaiza, who want to be a way to immerse themselves in Lete’s inner world. They propose an “intimate journey”, that is, records and books that complement each other.
The first contains twenty pieces for piano, adapted and performed by Joana Otxoa de Alaiza. Rather than adaptation, it can be said to be a work of creation, drinking from many sources. The echoes of Lete’s melodies are sometimes obvious, but they are not unique. The texts in the book, on the other hand, are Gurrutxaga’s well-known “ideas about Lete’s work”, which make perfect sense in the dialogue with the album’s music, as the two contributions enrich each other.