THE FLAVOR OF SPAIN™-Weekly Spanish Composer-Jesús García Leoz

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This Week’s Spanish Composer: JESÚS GARCÍA LEOZ (1904-1953)

by Elena Greco

August 11, 2015

Born in Navarre, Jesús García Leoz spent much of his life in Madrid.  An accomplished concert pianist, he studied composition with Joaquin Turina, and was apparently one of Turina’s favorite pupils.  After successfully composing cinema soundtracks prolifically for a decade, Leoz turned to chamber music, publishing works for piano, quartet and ballet, as well as three song cycles.  An opera was in the works when he died prematurely at age 49 from a heart attack.

In the 15 months before his death, he composed his major piano and orchestral works, as well as the Canciones with lyrics by Antonio Machado, and the zarzuelas La Alegre Alcaldesa, La Duquesa del Candil, and Primavera en el Portal.  He left an unfinished opera, Barataria.

The gorgeous Tripticos de Canciones, with lyrics by Federico García Lorca, is probably the work best known to singers.  The complete cycle of three songs runs under four minutes.  Here is it sung by María José Montiel (mezzosoprano) with Fernando Turina (piano):

1.  Por el aire:
2.  De Cádiz a Gibraltar:
3.  A la flor, a la pitiflor:


What is it about Spanish music that lets you know instantly that what you’re hearing is Spanish? The Flavor of Spain explores the exotic cultural influences that create that unique sound. Deep in the lush, passionate and thrilling sound of this music are influences of the Moorish, Greek, Turkish, Italian, French, Sephardic and Flamenco cultures, and you will hear all of these elements in the music of The Flavor of Spain concert series.

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For more information, please email Elena Greco.
For more information about The Flavor of Spain™ concert series, click here: The Flavor of Spain™.


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