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The Arditti Quartet’s latest release is devoted to the Mexican-born composer Hilda Paredes. Now living in England, she does not, for all that, disown her roots. Born in Tehuacán, in Puebla State, she engages critical reflection, vis-à-vis the multiple Mexican, indigenous and folk cultures, that closely combines the imaginary and political, all in writing of remarkable precision and refinement.

Convinced that the language spoken by a composer shapes his or her music, she likes to work the voice in all its expressive singularities, here that of countertenor Jake Arditti, Irvine Arditti’s son. There is no ‘Mexican-ness’ with Hilda Paredes, in the sense of that stereotyped colourful sensuality, but rather a close relation to the poetic speech of Mexico and the European avant-garde.

5 Diapason award