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City-Wide Festival Celebrating the Legacy of Joaquín Rodrigo in New York

Apr. 01, 2019

City-Wide Festival Celebrating the Legacy of Joaquín Rodrigo in New York

Celebrated musicologists, performers and members of the Rodrigo family came together in New York in April 2019 as part of a city-wide festival titled “Joaquín Rodrigo: An Anniversary Celebration-The Guitar and Beyond” marking the twentieth anniversary of Joaquín Rodrigo's passing. On April 4, the Hispanic Society of America presented a concert of Joaquín Rodrigo's works for solo and 4-hand piano including Sonatina para dos muñecas, A l'ombre de Torre Bermeja, Danza de la amapola, Serenata EspañolaCuatro estampas andaluzas, Juglares, and Cuatro piezas para piano. The performance, which took place at the American Academy of Arts and Letters, was preceeded by remarks from the performers: pianists Isabel Pérez Dobarro and Douglas Riva, and the composer's daughter Cecilia Rodrigo-Kamhi, Marquise of the Gardens of Aranjuez and President of the Fundación Victoria y Joaquín Rodrigo.

(Serenata Española/Joaquín Rodrigo/Krzysztof Stypulkowski, piano)

Then, on April 9, the King Juan Carlos I of Spain Center at New York University hosted a round-table with scholars, musicians, and Ms. Cecilia Rodrigo-Kamhi as well as a performance of Rodrigo's songs for voice and guitar by mezzo-soprano, Anna Tonna and guitarist, Federico Díaz. The panel discussed the tremendous role that Rodrigo's compositions had in shaping the identity of 20th-century Spanish music and explored some of his powerful, yet lesser-performed works including A la búsca del más allá, a symphonic tone poem written in 1976 after Rodrigo toured the headquarters of the US space agency NASA in Texas. When he was subsequently commissioned by the Houston Symphony Orchestra for the US bicentennial, he decided to write a piece about the human exploration of space. The work begins and ends with a long roll on suspended cymbals; it emerges from nowhere and disappears, comments Rodrigo, ‘as if lost somewhere in space – in the other world’.

(A la búsca del más allá/Joaquín Rodrigo/London Symphony Orchestra/Enrique Bátiz, conductor)

In addition, a collection of Joaquín Rodrigo's original songs, arranged for voice and guitar by Marco Socias (Àlbum para canto y guitarra. Edición XX Aniversario) was recently released by Ediciones Joaquín Rodrigo. For more information and to purchase the album click here.

("De los Álamos Vengo, Madre" from Cuatro Madrigales Amatorios/Joaquín Rodrigo/
Kathleen Battle, soprano and Lawrence Skrobacs, piano)

(Cuatro canciones sefardies/Joaquín Rodrigo/Ana María Martinez)
An additional panel discussion on the works of Joaquín Rodrigo will take place at Harvard University's Instituto Cervantes on April 11. The panelists are identical to those who spoke at NYU on April 9, including Walter A. Clark, Antoni Pizà, Douglas Riva, and Javier Suárez-Pajares, moderated by the festival director, Isabel Pérez Dobarro. Mezzo-soprano Anna Tonna will perform with guitarist Hermelindo Ruiz.

For more information about Joaquín Rodrigo, visit or

Joaquín Rodrigo
Sonatina para dos Muñecas (1977)
for piano 4-hands

A l'ombre de Torre Bermeja (1945)
for piano solo

Danza de la amapola (1972)
for piano solo

Serenata Española (1931)
for piano solo

Cuatro estampas aldaluzas (1946-1952)
for piano solo

Juglares (1923)
for piano, 4-hands

Cuatro piezas para piano (1938)
for piano solo

A la búsca del más allá (1977)
for orchestra