Alejandro Aldekoa: Master of Pipe and Tabor Dance Music in the Basque Country (Paperback)
by Sabin Bikandi.
(No. 18 Occasional Papers Series)
Includes DVD of music and dance performances
“Aldekoa’s biography is not a unique, isolated, or extreme case. Instead, it reflects the ups and downs in the life of most Basques who experienced the Second Republic, the Spanish Civil War, and Franco’s dictatorship. In that sense, his testimony reflects a part of the history of a country through a highly personal, but culturally and socially embedded point of view—that of a local pipe and tabor player.” —Sabin Bikandi, Alejandro Aldekoa
This book explores the pipe and tabor dance music of Berriz (a small town in the Basque Country), as revealed through the life and work of Alejandro Aldekoa (1920–96), dance master and txistularia (“pipe and tabor player”). His life spanned the difficult period of the Spanish Civil War, the Franco regime, and the present uncertain political situation. His art both responded to and shaped the times he lived through, becoming part of the process for expressing Basque nationalism. Sabin Bikandi addresses many issues: the influence of Basque nationalist ideology on music and dance, the part played by the Association of Txistulariak of the Basque Country and its journal Txistulari in articulating that ideology, the role of the dance master as a ritual specialist in the transmission and performance of the tradition, the importance placed on local knowledge of Western music theory, the repertoire of the ritual dances (including new prescriptive notations for their performance), and the significance of the ritual dances as a cohesive element of Basque identity in this ethnically mixed community.
2009, Paperback ISBN 978-1-877802-93-5, $29.95 USD