Saturday, March 1, 2014

75th Birthday of Afro-Cuban Composer, Guitarist & Conductor Leo Brouwer Marred by Death of Paco de Lucia, his friend for four decades

Leo Brouwer (b. 1939) (Cuba Absolutely) at
V Leo Brouwer Festival of Chamber Music,
September 28-October 13, 2013

The Afro-Cuban composer, classical guitarist and conductor we now know as Leo Brouwer was named Juan Leovigildo Brouwer when he came into the world in Havana, Cuba on March 1, 1939. He is featured at

Leo Brouwer's 75th birthday today, March 1, 2014, has been overshadowed by the sudden death on Wednesday, February 26, 2014 of his friend of four decades, Paco de Lucia:

"Prensa Latina
February 26, 2014

Leo Brouwer Shocked After Paco de Lucía's Sudden Death
Havana, Feb 26 (Prensa Latina) World renowned Cuban musician Leo Brouwer said to be shocked after learning about the sudden death of his colleague and friend, Spanish guitarist Paco de Lucía.

Staff members of Leo Brouwer's office told Prensa Latina the maestro had postponed all activities, including composition, since he and the late Paco de Lucía were close friends.

"Isabelle Hernández, director of the Chamber Music Leo Brouwer Festival, recalled they have been friends for four decades and Brouwer had invited him to offer a concert in Cuba last October, 26 years after performing for the first time in the island."

Leo Brouwer's enormous influence on guitar music in particular and classical music in general is demonstrated by more than a hundred recordings on which he has played, composed or conducted. Brouwer's compositions reflect classical, Afro-Cuban, jazz and avant-garde influences. His many film scores have brought his music to the attention of a huge audience around the world. Brouwer's influence in his native country results in part from the important positions he has held in Cuban music institutions.

Leo Brouwer is Founder and Conductor Emeritus of the Orquesta de Córdoba in Spain.  He founded the Havana String Quartet in 1980.  In 2011 the Zoho Classix label released the Quartet's CD of Leo Brouwer's String Quartets 1-4, and his String Trio from 1959.  The recording won a Latin Grammy in 2010, and was very favorably reviewed by music critics.  An April, 2013 release on the Zoho label combines music of Leo Brouwer and The Beatles, with Carlos Barbosa-Lima joining the Havana String Quartet.

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