Javier Serrano Godoy, Scherzo magazine (February 2021)
It is an enormous pleasure for the aficionado of regular CDs to find a project that deviates from the standard we get fed by the majority of most record labels. New horizons are opened. That is what this splendid work by Cantaderas is about. These four sun-drenched female voices and their Cantigas de Santa Maria make a perfect combination of carefully selected popular songs from various parts of the Iberian peninsula.
Works like this are necessary to remove the stereotypes associated with religious or popular music. They create a cohesive living organism, performing with absolute sincerity and an amazing variety of nuances. Sound does not have absolute priority. Instead it is guided by text. The product is music which is free of artificial ingredients. To be able to understand every comma of the beautiful poetry on which this music is based, be it in Castilian or Galician-Portuguese, is a painfully unusual phenomenon.
All this is possible if the work rests upon four pristine voices with a modest but effective instrumental contribution, putting all their efforts to serve and respect this beautiful work of art with their vocal cords. This recording is indispensable for the enthusiasts of medieval and popular songs. They will be able to rest their view, while reading in stereo.
Doce Notas. Angel Antonio Chirinos Amaro (December 2020)
Around the second half of the last century, several artistic iniciatives seeked for a revival of the oral traditional music from the iberic peninsula’s rural world. In the early music milieu many of those iniciatives focused on a dialogue between early music and traditional repertoires. The historic rigurosity and credibility of this dialogue recreation were not correlated with the artistic or tecnique quality of the proposals. Even if this iniciatives are today mostly rare, the production „As festas do Anno“ from the ensemble Cantaderas takes over from a classical music perspective with an optimal result.
Cantaderas links both repertoires proposing a tracklist of a medieval and a rural calender in which religious and life cycle festivities come after each other (consecutively). For that the ensemble takes as a core (nucleous) the group of pieces called „As festas do Anno“, which we can find at the Codice Rico, one of the manuscripts of the famous Cantigas de Alfonso X el Sabio. Taking these pieces as a starting point, cantaderas yuxtaposes the traditional ones creating a dialogue between both groups.
With a solide tecnique, very modulated and tuned voices, it is an artistic proposal that gives off creativity and good taste, a must if we are talking about medieval and traditional music.
Martin Weber. Witterswil (Switzerland)
Great knowledge, warm voices, a fantastic technique, joyful singing: the ensemble Cantaderas captivated the public with its concert in Witterswil. The variety of early Spanish music is astonishing and Cantaderas’ interpretation is a pleasure. The accompanying percussion instruments prove that these four women have rhythm in their blood.
An enchanting concert with short and charming introductions! A great pleasure and an overjoyed audience!
Joaquín Díaz. Urueña (Valladolid)– June 2017
A subtle thread, perhaps invisible and immaterial, set naturally together the sounds of other times. Those sounds were to be heard in medieval squares, in the kitchens of the Spanish Golden-age and in the baroque temples. This thread strings them together like pearls in a necklace until the perfect jewel materializes to embellish. Cantaderas, 4 singers that individually contribute with experience, knowledge and professionalism to the ensemble, knits with this thread a rich resonant weave that surprises with its repertoire chosen from different sources and ages. The versatility of the interpretation and the serene performance are two important characteristics of Cantaderas.
Thomas Friedländer. Dresden (Germany)
Just by looking at the Cantaderas photo you realize – these four musicians don’t just sing on stage. Instead they live out their unrestrained love for music. They sing intensely, drum energetically, reenact a procession and interact closely.The effect is endearing, especially because there is laughter in the air…. The audience is delighted.These professionals present their repertoire in a first class manner. The audience is rewarded with a fascinating excursion into traditional Northern Spanish music combined with medieval Iberic music.
Yolanda Criado. Broadcast programme : La Riproposta, Radio Clásica-RTVE.
Four voices of four women whose traditional music performance is a revelation. The Ensemble Cantaderas takes listeners on a journey into the past with its traditional repertoire from 19th and 20th century songbooks and certain medieval pieces.
These voices are refreshingly different from what we know in folk music – they awaken an association with the ancestral sound of an old traditional repertoire.
The ensemble celebrates the traditional folk heritage, researching its different ways of interpretation. The music relies on the first field recordings made in the Iberian Peninsula, and Cantaderas’ aim to approach a plausible interpretation of earlier repertoires, an unusual approach for classically trained musicians.
The music’s subtlety combined with the musicians’ pleasure at performing is transmitted to the public. It is a thrill to see them and listen to them. Congratulations on their work and their sensitivity. We are looking forward to their first CD.