Monday, May 21, 2012

Music of New Spain

Many folks are not aware of the rather impressive musical contributions made by composers in the Spanish Viceroyalty of New Spain.  Another day, I will have to explore the music of the other major Viceroyalties of the Latin New World.
File:Nueva España 1795.png
The Viceroyalty of New Spain at its geographical greatest extent.

Take for instance the Spanish-born Hernando Franco (+1585AD) who would be musically active in Guatemala and Mexico.  This is a setting he wrote of the Salve Regina:

Here is a setting of the Regina Caeli by the same composer:

Worthy of note, too, is that the Church featured in the images of this video is the Church of Santa Prisca in the silver-mining town of Taxco, just south of Mexico City.

Next, from the Portuguese-born Gaspar Fernandes (+1629), this being his Piezas para la entrada del Virrey don Diego Fernández de Córdoba.  These pieces were written, as the name implies, for the arrival in Puebla, Mexico of the Viceroy of New Spain, Diego Fernández de Córdoba y López de las Roelas, Marquis of Guadalcázar and Count of Posadas (Viceroy of New Spain, 1612-1621AD):

Moving along, we have Juan Gutiérrez de Padilla (+1664), a Spanish-born composer who was mainly active in Puebla, Mexico, and head of the choir in that city.  This is a setting of the Lamentations of Jeremiah:

The images in this video are from Puebla, Mexico -- again giving you an idea of the architecture of colonial New Spain.  The cathedral of Puebla, like Santa Prisca in Taxco, is magnificient, indeed!

We might also note Francisco Lopez Capillas (+1673) who was Mexican-born. This is a setting of the Laudate Dominum found in the archives of the Cathedral of Oaxaca, Mexico:

Now, some music from one of the more prominent of the Mexican-born, mestizo, composers, Manuel de Zumaya (+1755AD), the Kappelmeister of the cathedral of Mexico City from 1715-1734, when he moved to Oaxaca.  This is a setting of Angelicas Milicas by Fr. Zumaya:

Showing he can handle the more solemn, as well, here is a setting of Hieremiae Prophetae Lamentationes -- the Lamentations of the Prophet Jeremiah -- also by Manuel de Zumaya:

Finally, the Cuban-born composer, Esteban Salas y Castro (+1803AD), master of the choir at the cathedral of Santiago de Cuba from 1764AD, who wrote this setting of the Communio from the Requiem Mass:

My search for the equivalent music from the colonal English world is turning up rather dry.  For the Viceroyalties of Peru and Brazil, however, I have more for later posts...

Live well!

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