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The Archive of Navarre recovers a work by the composer Emilio Arrieta

The Archive of Navarre recovers a work by the composer Emilio Arrieta

The Archive of Navarre has recovered the work Recuerdos del Dominó Azul by the composer Emilio Arrieta. The work has recently been incorporated into the Navarrese Sound Archive with another 29 new recordings corresponding to selected works by composers José Castel, Joaquín Larregla, Jesús García Leoz, Tomás Asiáin and Emilio Arrieta himself. The recordings have been made possible thanks to the collaboration of the Navarra Symphony Orchestra with the Music and Performing Arts Archive programme, run by the General Directorate of Culture-Principe de Viana Institution.

These thirty recordings will be added to the seventeen incorporated in 2022 and the twenty-nine initial recordings used to set up the Sound Archive in 2021, all important examples of Navarre’s rich musical heritage covering a wide range of time periods, musical genres and forms.

Today, the Navarrese Sound Archive is a benchmark for retrieval, conservation and circulation of Navarrese musical heritage, drawing on the most outstanding compositions, their authors and musicians. Through recordings and appropriate promotion, the Archive bolsters the value of these musical creations, as the region’s musical legacy and memory, by ensuring both availability and accessibility.

The recordings are universally accessible, free of charge, in the Music and Performing Arts Archive of Navarre (, under the “Navarrese Sound Archive” section. Each work has its own link, which can be played in high quality mp3 format, and specific information on the context of the work, its recording date and the performers.

El Dominó Azul by Emilio Arrieta

El Dominó Azul was the first zarzuela composed by Emilio Arrieta Corera (Puente la Reina, 1821 - Madrid, 1894), who received the commission through Joaquín Gaztambide. The work was first performed on 19 February 1853 to great critical and public acclaim. When it was re-released for the opening of the Zarzuela Theatre season in 1882, Arrieta composed a new overture for the original work which thrilled the critics. Unfortunately, the subsequent loss of the orchestral score meant that the work was never played again, and only the conductor’s script remained in the Spanish National Library (BNE).

Fortunately, while processing the Huarte fund, kept in the Navarrese Music and Performing Arts Archive, the orchestra score was identified for Recuerdos del Dominó Azul en Forma de Obertura, so this piece could be recovered. Meticulous editing work on the score made it possible to record the Navarre Symphony Orchestra’s performance in the Baluarte auditorium in September 2022, conducted by Jesús Echeverría. This recording joins the set of thirteen works by Emilio Arrieta which were included in the Navarrese Sound Archive in 2022, on the bicentenary of this wonderful composer’s birth.

Trios by José Castel

José Castel Caramusel (Tudela, 1737 - 1807) enjoyed great success and prestige. He was chapel master (maestro de capilla) at the Santa María Cathedral in Tudela and forged an important career as a composer of tonadillas (ditties, popular songs) for the stage in Madrid. His musical production comprises over eighty items including around fifty zarzuelas and tonadillas, symphonies, overtures, chamber music or keyboard music.

The Sound Archive has specifically received a collection of chamber music published in Paris, namely Sei trio a due violini é basso, from around 1785, where the composer’s name had been Italianised to Guisepe Castel. The work, structured into six Trios, includes a total of eighteen pieces. The recording took place in the General and Royal Archive of Navarre in June 2021, performed by the “Trío Castel”.

Suite Navarra by Joaquín Larregla

Joaquín Larregla Urbieta (Lumbier, 1865 - Madrid, 1945) was a prolific composer, who covered a wide range of genres over his career, including religious and secular songs, symphonic works and zarzuelas. His talent as a player was also reflected in his work for piano, combining folk pieces with others akin to 19th century romanticism.

The work joining the Navarrese Sound Archive is Suite Navarra, comprising four movements, including the jota Siempre P’alante, arranged for orchestra by Federico Moreno Torroba. It was performed by the Navarre Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Jesús Echeverría, in September 2022.

Sonatina by Jesús García Leoz

Jesús García Leoz (Olite, 1904 - Madrid, 1953), pianist and composer, studied at the Madrid Royal Conservatory, where he forged close ties with Joaquín Turina and the Student Residence intellectuals. Branded by his support for the Republic during the Civil War, he underwent a political purification process. His previous work in silent cinema as a pianist, plus his friendship with Ataúlfo Argenta, brought him great success in cinematographic composition, where he was entirely self-taught. He spent his later years working on pure music composition, cut short by his sudden death.

The work which will be added to the Navarrese Sound Archive is Sonatina, in three movements, performed by the Navarre Symphony Orchestra in September 2022, conducted by Jesús Echeverría. García Leoz composed Sonatina para piano, between 31 August and 25 September 1940, dedicated to Turina. The work was first performed in March 1946 by the pianist Federico Quevedo in the Círculo Medina in Madrid. It was included in the movie Cuatro mujeres by Antonio del Amo in 1947. García Leoz finished the orchestral score for this piano work in early 1953, shortly before his sudden death on 23 February. The orchestral version of the Sonatina was first played on 13 March 1953, performed by the Spanish National Orchestra, conducted by Ataúlfo Argenta, in the Palacio de la Música.

Suite de las Tres Danzas by Tomás Asiáin

Tomás Asiáin Magaña (Tudela, 1922 - 1989) met his fellow countryman and maestro Fernando Remacha when studying music in Madrid, forging a friendship that lasted for the rest of his life. Fernando Remacha introduced him to Falla’s music, and he composed his first important pieces at this time, such as the Suite de las tres danzas, finished in 1956. This Suite is divided into three parts, based on folk subjects, with a clear influence on Asiáin from the impressionist movement. The composer mentioned the idea that inspired this composition in the score: “Snoozing under the poplar trees, it dreams of dance”.

The Suite included in the Navarrese Sound Archive, recorded in September 2022, was performed by the Navarre Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Jesús Echeverría.

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