Babalu (Motivo Afro-Cubano)

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Bembe was premiered in Havana the same year. His Obertura cubana won first prize in a national contest in Caturla was murdered at 34 by a young gambler. Gonzalo Roig — , was a major force in the first half of the century.

Babalu (Motivo Afro-Cubano) Sheet Music by Margarita Lecuona

In he was one of the founders of the National Symphony Orchestra, which he conducted. In he was appointed Director of the Havana School of Music. As a composer he specialized in the zarzuela , a musical theatre form, very popular up to World War II. In he co-founded a bufo company comic theatre at the Marti Theatre in Havana. It was premiered in He founded various organizations and wrote frequently on musical topics.

He was a prolific composer of songs and music for stage and film. His works consisted of zarzuela , Afro-Cuban and Cuban rhythms, suites and many songs that became Latin standards.

During its existence from to , the group organized numerous concerts at the Havana Lyceum in order to present their avant-garde compositions to the general public and fostered within its members the development of many future conductors, art critics, performers and professors. Although, in Cuba, many composers have written both classical and popular creole types of music, the distinction became clearer after , when at least initially the regime frowned on popular music and closed most of the night-club venues, whilst providing financial support for classical music rather than creole forms.

From then on most musicians have kept their careers on one side of the invisible line or the other. After the Cuban Revolution in , a new crop of classical musicians came onto the scene. The most important of these is guitarist Leo Brouwer , who made significant innovations in classical guitar, and is currently the director of the Havana Symphonic Orchestra.

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His directorship in the early s of the Cuban Institute of Instrumental and Cinematographic Arts ICAIC was instrumental in the formation and consolidation of the nueva trova movement. Closely following the early post-revolution generation, a group of young composers started to attract the attention of the public that attended classical music concerts. After the Cuban Revolution , many future Cuban composers emigrated at a very young age and developed most of their careers outside the country. During the last decades of the 20th century and the beginning of the 21st century a new generation of composers emerged into the Cuban classical music panorama.

Most of them received a solid musical education provided by the official arts school system created by the Cuban government and graduated from the Instituto Superior de Arte ISA. All of them have emigrated and currently live and work in other countries. Juan Blanco was the first Cuban composer to create an electroacoustic piece in This first composition, titled "Musica Para Danza", was produced with just an oscillator and three common tape recorders. As a result of the enormous scarcity generated by the trade embargo placed on Cuba by the United States, access to the necessary technological resources to produce electroacoustic music was always very limited for anyone interested.

For this reason, it was not until that another Cuban composer, Sergio Barroso , dedicated himself to the creation of electroacoustic musical compositions. In this capacity, he created electroacoustic music for all the audiovisual materials produced by ICAP.

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After nine years working without restitution, Blanco finally obtained financing to set up an Electroacoustic Studio to be used for his work. He was appointed as Director of the Studio, but under the condition that he should be the only one to use the facility. After a few months, and without asking for permission, he opened the Electroacoustic Studio to all composers interested in working with electroacoustic technology, thus creating the ICAP Electroacoustsic Music Workshop TIME , where he himself provided training to all participants.

Most Cuban composers that established their residence outside Cuba have worked with electroacoustic technology. The guitar as it is known today or in one of its historical versions has been present in Cuba since the discovery of the island by Spain. In he performed at a much acclaimed concert in Havana, after returning from Spain. Mungol actively participated in the musical life of Havana and was a professor at the Hubert de Blanck conservatory. She inaugurated the guitar department at the Havana Municipal Conservatory in , where she also introduced the teachings of the Cuban folk guitar style.

He also studied the vihuela with Pujol and researched about the guitar's history and literature. This was a nucleus for the later development of a national Cuban Guitar School with which a new generation of guitarists and composers collaborated. Maybe the most important contribution to the modern Cuban guitar technique and repertoire comes from Leo Brouwer born The grandson of Ernestina Lecuona, sister of Ernesto Lecuona, Brouwer began studying the guitar with his father and after some time continued with Isaac Nicola.

He taught himself harmony, counterpoint, musical forms and orchestration before completing his studies at the Juilliard School and the University of Hartford.


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  • Since the s, several generations of guitar performers, professors and composers have been formed under the Cuban Guitar School at educational institutions such as the Havana Municipal Conservatory, the National School of Arts, and the Instituto Superior de Arte. Others, such as Manuel Barrueco , a concertist of international renown, developed their careers outside the country.

    After its arrival in Cuba at the end of the 18th century, the pianoforte commonly called piano rapidly became one of the favorite instruments among the Cuban population. Along with the humble guitar, the piano accompanied the popular Cuban "guarachas" and "contradanzas" derived from the European Country Dances at salons and ballrooms in Havana and all over the country.

    Encouraged by the warm welcome, Edelmann decided to stay in Havana, and he was very soon promoted to an important position within the Santa Cecilia Philharmonic Society. In , he opened a music store and publishing company.

    Mayra Leon y Banda Cubana Babalu Afro Salsa

    One of the most prestigious Cuban musicians, Ernesto Lecuona , began studying piano with his sister Ernestina and continued with Peyrellade , Saavedra, Nin and Hubert de Blanck. When he graduated from the National Conservatory, he was awarded the First Prize and the Gold Medal of his class by unanimous decision of the board.

    He is by far the Cuban composer of greatest international recognition and his contributions to the Cuban piano tradition are considered exceptional. The renaissance viol is the direct ancestor of the modern Italian violins, which began to become popular since the 16th century. To fulfill his musical duties, Salas counted with a small vocal-instrumental group that included two violins. After the arrival in Santiago de Cuba, in , of numerous colonists that fled from the slave revolt in Saint Domingue, "someone named Karl Rischer and a Madame Clarais, that had brought with them a clavichord, founded an orchestra comprised of: flute, oboe, clarinet, trumpet, three horns, three violins, viola, two violoncellos and percussion…".

    During the transition from the 18th to the 19th centuries, the Havanese Ulpiano Estrada — offered violin lessons and conducted the Teatro Principal orchestra from to Apart from his activity as a violinist, Estrada kept a very active musical career as a conductor of numerous orchestras, bands and operas, and composing many contradanzas and other dance pieces, such as minuets and valses.

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    Vandergutch offered numerous concerts as a soloist and accompanied by several orchestras, around the midth century. In that presentation he was accompanied by the famous American pianist and composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk , whom encouraged him to further his musical instruction in Paris, and also collected funds for that purpose. Just ten months after his arrival he received the First Price in the violin category on the Conservatorie's contest and was highly praised by Gioachino Rossini. At a later time he was a professor of the renowned violinists George Enescu and Jacques Thibaud.

    The famous violin named "Swan's song" was his preferred instrument and his most famous composition is the Habanera "La bella cubana". White also composed many other pieces, including a concert for violin and orchestra. He offered his first concert in Havana in , in which Vandegutch participated as accompanist. The famous pianist and composer Ignacio Cervantes also participated in that event. According with the contemporary critique, Brindis de Salas was considered one of the most outstanding violinists of his time at an international level. Alejo Carpentier referred to him as: "The most outstanding black violinist from the 19th century… something without any precedent in the musical history of the continent…".

    In Buenos Aires he received a genuine Stradivarius , and while living in Berlin he married a German lady, was named Chamber Musician of the Emperor and received an honorary citizenship from that country. Brindis de Salas died poor and forgotten in from tuberculosis, in Buenos Aires , Argentina. In his remains were transferred to Havana with great honors. In , Albertini travelled to Paris with the purpose of perfecting his technique with famous violinist Jean-Delphin Alard, and in received First Price in the Paris Contest, in which he subsequently participated as a Juror.

    In he made presentations, along with Ignacion Cervantes, through the most important cities of Cuba. He also toured extensively through the US. After , already in the post revolutionary period, stands out a Cuban violinist that has made a substantial contribution, not just to the development of the violin and the bowed string instruments, but also to the national musical culture in general.

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    Tieles graduated in and by recommendation of the Conservatory he pursued his master's degree from to , with the same mentioned professors. Evelio Tieles has offered numerous presentations as a concert performer, in a duo with his brother, pianist Cecilio Tieles, or accompanied by the Cuban National Symphony Orchestra and other symphonic and chamber ensembles. Tieles has established his residence in Spain since , and he teaches violin in the Vila-Seca Conservatory, in the province of Tarragona, where he has been appointed as "Professor Emeritus".

    Apart from his outstanding career as a concert performer and professor, during the Post-Revolutionary period, Tieles promoted and organized in Cuba the bowed string instruments training, fundamentally for the violin. She was formed as a violinist in her native Ukraine and worked as a professor of Chamber Ensemble Practice.

    He joined the National Symphony Orchestra as a violinist in and since then has been very active as a soloist and a member of the White Trio, in Cuba and abroad.


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    • Opera has been present in Cuba since the latest part of the 18th century, when the first full-fledged theater, called Coliseo, was built. Since then to present times, the Cuban people have highly enjoyed opera, and many Cuban composers have cultivated the operatic genre, sometimes with great success at an international level. The first documented operatic event in Havana took place in That presentation was mentioned in a note published in the newspaper Diario de La Habana on December 19, "…Today, Wednesday 19th of the current, if the weather allows, the new tragic opera of merit in three acts that contains 17 pieces of music, titled Dido Abandoned will be performed […] This is one of the premiere dramas from the French theater.

      In Italy, the one composed by renowned Metastasio deserved a singular applause, and was sung in this city on October 12, Due to his premature death, a third opera named Safo , never surpassed an early creative stage. Gaspar Villate y Montes was born in Havana, in and since an early age he showed a great musical talent.

      A year later, at the beginning of the war, he travelled to the United States with his family and upon his return to Havana in he wrote another opera called Las primeras armas de Richelieu.

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      He composed numerous instrumental pieces such as contradanzas , habaneras , romances and waltzes , and in he premiered with great audience acclaim his opera Zilia in Paris , which was presented in Havana in Since then, Villate focused his efforts mainly in opera and composed pieces such as La Zarina and Baltazar , premiered at La Haya and Teatro Real de Madrid respectively. Villate died in Paris in , soon after starting to compose a lyrical drama called Lucifer , from which some fragments have been preserved.

      He began his musical studies at Conservatorio Hubert de Blanck and at a later time took classes from Carlos Anckermann. He received also a Law Degree in Alejo Carpentier said it was: "the most famous Habanera". In it, an aborigine princess falls in love with a handsome Spanish conqueror, which abducts her at the wedding ceremony with another indigenous character. At the end, while escaping, both suffer a tragic death during an earthquake. The score includes soloists and a choir of nine mixed voices, accompanied by an instrumental group and an electro-acoustic quadraphonic system.

      The scene requires a stage elevated over the choir spatial position, which members wear dinner jackets, in opposition to the more casual attire of the soloists. All singers wear Indian masks. He studied musical composition at the Yale and Columbia Universities. He has composed thre lyric pieces: Beast and Superbeast , a series of four operas in one act each, based on short stories by Saki; Tobermory , opera in one act that obtained first prize in the Fifth Biennial of the National Opera Association USA , and has been presented in several cities of the United States; and Before Night Falls , an opera based on the famous autobiography of the Cuban novelist, playwright and poet Reinaldo Arenas , renowned dissident from the Fidel Castro government.