Carles Puigdemont, President of the Generalitat of Catalalonia.
I am very pleased to greet a concert by the Cobla and String Symphony Orchestra of Catalonia once again – I did so some time ago as mayor of Girona and now as president of the Government of Catalonia – because it shows the force with which this orchestra is growing, now well established after eight successful editions.
This year, the organization has taken note of the coincidence that it was my presence and that of Lluís Llach last year which gave rise to the idea of dedicating the 2016 concert to a collection of the most representative songs of the singer from Verges. Lluís Llach had admired then, as surely all those familiar with the Symphony Orchestra do, the unique sound produced by this musical group, which replaces the wind instruments of a traditional symphony orchestra (oboes, flutes, clarinets and bassoons) with the instruments characteristic of the Catalan cobla orchestra (tenora, tible, piccolo and flugelhorn).
Increasingly, all over the world, there is an institutional recognition that values the work of musicians and singer songwriters; prestigious awards, such as the Nobel Prize for literature of 2016 granted to an American musician, is a good example of this. It is in this line of recognition that, rightly so, Tossudament Llach (Obstinately Llach) becomes an anthology of the 50 years of the artist’s musical career.
This “obstinately”, which gives name to the title, includes both Llach’s perseverance as a musician with a long career and the civic aspect of a man who has seen how people have made his compositions their own, while distinguishing himself as a benchmark of unswerving commitment to Catalonia.
So, let me express once again my appreciation for Llach, and for the series of successes that have enabled the Cobla and String Symphony Orchestra of Catalonia to get to where it is today; for the groups of which it is comprised – the Youth Orchestra of Girona and La Principal de la Bisbal -; and for the support and patronage provided by Metalquimia, example of the fruitful cultural collaboration between public institutions and private companies.
Thanks to all those who have made possible a concert that will without doubt be a great success, as will our yearning for the country that – as expressed by the lyrics of Tossudament alçats (Obstinately standing) “(...) is not only a dream, but also the measure of freedom”.