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Joan ManÚn
1883 - 1971
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J. ManÚn
Joan ManÚn (14/05/1883 - 26/06/1971), a Spanish composer. He was born in Barcelona in 1883, was a fine pianist who played Chopin concertos when he was only seven, later switching to the violin which he quickly mastered. He gave many concerts but was competing with Heifetz, Szigeti and other major violinists of the time. He composed prolifically well into his eighties, his works including operas, ballets and a symphony, and his works for violin and orchestra include Variations on Turkey in the Straw. Dissatisfied with many of his early works, Manen revised many of them in later years identifying them with the letter A preceding the opus number. Concierto Espagnol, written when Manen was in his teens, is dedicated to Fritz Kreisler although there is no indication the famous violinist ever played or even heard of the work. Kaplan gives a detailed positive description of the 31-minute concerto and, expectedly, is generous in praise for the work. However, after a somewhat impressive beginnng, the concerto falls into the commonplace with little thematic interest but plenty of virtuoso episodes for the soloist. Kaplan, the orchestra and Foster do what can be done for Concierto Espagnol, but it's easy to understand why this music isn't better known. Manen obviously felt he filled an important position in Spanish music; before his death in 1971 he wrote a three-volume autobiography.
In memory of:the composer's mother
Requiem for soloists, choir and orchestra. Notes: Dedicated to his mother. Score is lost.
Author:Otto Keller
Source:Geschichte der Musik
Contributor:Anton Geersen