Manuel de Falla

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Falla, Manuel de

(mänwĕl` dā fä`lyä), 1876–1946, Spanish composer; pupil of Felipe Pedrell. In Paris from 1907 to 1914, he met DebussyDebussy, Claude Achille
, 1862–1918, French composer, exponent of musical impressionism. He studied for 11 years at the Paris Conservatory, receiving its Grand Prix de Rome in 1884 for his cantata L'Enfant Prodigue.
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, DukasDukas, Paul
, 1865–1935, French composer and critic. He was influenced by both the romanticism of Wagner and the impressionism of Debussy. His compositions are few, the best known being a symphonic poem, The Sorcerer's Apprentice (1897), and an opera,
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, and RavelRavel, Maurice
, 1875–1937, French composer, b. in the Pyrenees. He entered the Paris Conservatory in 1889, where he was later a student of Fauré. Ravel became a leading exponent of impressionism.
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, and was to some extent influenced by their impressionism. His music, however, remained distinctively Spanish, rooted both in Andalusian folk music and the classical tradition of Spain. Falla was an authority on flamencoflamenco,
Spanish music and dance typical of the Romani (Gypsy), or gitano. Flamenco dancing is characterized by colorful costumes, intense and erotic movements, stamping of the feet (zapateado), and clapping of the hands (palmada
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 music and made use of it in his compositions, keeping the vitality of flamenco but imposing upon it rigorous musical structure. Notable among his compositions are an opera, La vida breve [life is short] (1913); a suite for piano and orchestra, Noches en los jardines de España [nights in the gardens of Spain] (1916); and the celebrated ballets El Amor Brujo [wedded by witchcraft] (1915) and El sombrero de tres picos [the three-cornered hat] (1917). From 1921 to 1939 Falla lived in Granada, organizing festivals of native folk songs and touring Europe to conduct his own works. He moved to Argentina in 1939, where he directed the first performance of his guitar solo, Homenaje (1920); later orchestrated as Homenajes. His ambitious choral work La Atlántida occupied his later years; it was finished after his death by Ernesto Halffter and presented in Madrid in 1961.


See G. Chase, The Music of Spain (1960) and S. Demarquez, Manuel de Falla (tr. 1968).

Falla, Manuel de


Born Nov. 23, 1876, in Cádiz; died Nov. 14, 1946, in Alta Gracia, Argentina. Spanish composer and pianist.

Falla studied piano with J. Tragó and composition with F. Pedrell. He first gained recognition with the opera La vida breve (Life Is Short), composed in 1905 and first performed in Nice in 1913, and several subsequent works based on Andalusian folklore. He also gave piano recitals. From 1907 to 1914, Falla lived in Paris, where he met Debussy, Dukas, and Ravel. The music of the French composers influenced Falla’s symphonic impressions for piano and orchestra Noches en los jardines de España (Nights in the Gardens of Spain, 1915). Other major works by Falla include the ballets El amor brujo (Wedded by Witchcraft; Madrid, 1915) and El sombrero de tres picos (The Three-cornered Hat; London, 1919) and the opera El retablo de Maese Pedro (Master Peter’s Puppet Show, 1923; based on Cervantes’ Don Quixote), which combines elements of the opera, ballet-pantomime, and puppet show of Castilian folklore.

Notable among Falla’s other compositions are Fantasía bélica for solo piano (1919), a concerto for harpsichord and chamber orchestra (1924), Siete canciones populares españolas (1914), Quatre Pièces espagnoles for piano (1909), and a composition for solo guitar (1920), dedicated to the memory of Debussy. Many of Falla’s works are known from adaptations for violin and piano by F. Kreisler and P. Kochański and for cello and piano by M. Maréchal.

Falla’s music combines elements of the Spanish national tradition with those of Western European music of the early 20th century. It is marked by clarity and perfection of form, a wealth of rhythmic effects, and lush orchestral color. Intensely expressive, it nevertheless demonstrates a discipline of emotion.

In late 1939, Falla emigrated from Franco’s Spain to Argentina, where he occasionally appeared as a conductor.


In Russian translation:
Stat’i o muzyke i muzykantakh. Moscow, 1971.


Krein, Iu. Manuel’ de Fal’ia. Moscow, 1960.
Ossovskii, A. “Ocherk istorii ispanskoi muzykal’noi kul’tury.” In his book Izbr. stat’i, vospominaniia. Leningrad, 1961. Pages 227–88.
Bronfin, E. “Manuel’ de Fal’ia kak muzykal’nyi pisatel’.” In M. de Falla, Stat’i o muzyke i muzykantakh. Moscow, 1971. (Translated from Spanish.)
Cúelar, J. M. de Falla. Madrid, 1968.


References in periodicals archive ?
Ademas, en el contexto de los anos diez se habia creado una cierta expectativa sobre la escuela musical espanola como sucesora de la rusa y desde la nacion vecina llegaban algunas profecias al respecto: en 1914, despues del estreno de La vida breve de Manuel de Falla, un critico frances escribio que la musica espanola estaba "llamada a ocupar en el mundo el lugar preponderante que hoy ocupa la musica rusa" (89).
Siete Canciones Populares Espanolas, Manuel de Falla ("El Pano Moruno," "Seguidilla Murciana," "Asturiana," "Jota," "Nana," "Cancion," "Polo")
De los discos que ha grabado cabe destacar las Noches en los Jardines de Espana de Manuel De Falla con la Orquesta Sinfonica del Estado de Mexico, resenada como "la mejor version en existencia de esta obra" por la revista musical Fanfare de Estados Unidos; asi como obras de Felipe Villanueva y Ricardo Castro.
This book was written in 1921, when Lorca was just twenty-three, for a cante jondo festival he was organizing in Granada with Spanish composer Manuel de Falla.
Bookending renditions of Ravel's ``Mother Goose Suite'' and ``Bolero'' Thursday will be a Phil premiere: ``Master Peter's Puppet Show,'' the rarely performed, 27-minute composition by Spanish composer Manuel de Falla.
Asimismo, el versatil titiritero presento en Alemania la opera El retablo de maese Pedro (igualmente inspirada en El Quijote), de Manuel de Falla, acompanado por la orquesta Solistas de Mexico, dirigida por Eduardo Mata.
Juan Falu, tucumano de nacimiento, psicologo fuera de ejercicio graduado en la Universidad Nacional de Tucuman, ha dirigido proyectos musicales de gran envergadura como la primera carrera Superior de Tango y Folclore en el Conservatorio Manuel de Falla de Buenos Aires, donde es docente desde 1992; o el ya tradicional Festival Guitarras del Mundo, que ano a ano nos conmueve con su presencia.
Habiamos pensado en Ramon Sije como en el humilde companero del tan traido y llevado poeta-pastor y nos encontramos con alguien que en veintidos anos tuvo tiempo de colaborar en un monton de revistas, de crear una, como vimos, de participar en el homenaje a Gabriel Miro, de tener correspondencia con Juan Ramon Jimenez, con Manuel de Falla, con Ortega y Gasset, con Adriano del Valle, etc.
He also included Nights in the Gardens of Spain by Manuel de Falla, Beethoven's String Quartet No.
Hernandez; and an arrangement of an excerpt from El Amor Brujo by Manuel de Falla.
De Luis's costumes were imaginative--black for the beginning of the performance, as if to absorb some of the heat and passion of the music and dance; bold, hot colors for the Joaquin Turina, Albeniz, and Manuel de Falla pieces; and a cooler peach-colored ensemble, with a long bata de cola that she used as a prop, for the Sarasate.
Manuel de Falla based his ballet of the same title on the story.