Antonio Soler composed more than 500 sacred choral musical pieces in his native Spain. Today, though, it is his 200-or-so keyboard sonatas that are arousing the curiosity of performers. Our anthology volume presents 18 of them from all periods of the composer’s creative life. In 1761 Soler wrote a music-theory treatise in which he sketched out methods of quickly modulating to remote keys; these techniques are also found in his keyboard sonatas. In this Urtext volume the player will enjoy the subtlety and speed of modulation between keys, and a brilliant lightness occasionally darkened by moments of pathos.
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Padre Antonio Soler was born in Olot, Province of Gerona, Spain. The exact date of his birth is nowhere recorded, only that he was baptized on December 3, 1729. His father, a musician in the Regiment of Numancia, instructed his little son in the rudiments of music and at the age of six, because of his beautiful voice, took him to the famed singing school (Escolonia) of the … more
About the composer
A Spanish composer, organist, and music director of the Classical period who composed a large number of works for keyboard (clavichord, harpsichord, organ, piano). Elements of Spanish folk music are frequently found in his compositions. He also composed masses, operas, and chamber music, and wrote treatises on music theory in which, among other things, he advocates for major–minor tonality.
|1729||Baptized in Olot (Girona) on December 3.|
|around 1736/37||He becomes a chorister at the Benedictine monastery at Montserrat. Through intensive study of works by Juan Cabanilles, José Elias, and others, he learns organ playing and compositional techniques.|
|1752||He probably occupies the position of cathedral music director at the Cathedral of La Seu d’Urgell and is appointed subdeacon by the bishop there. That same year he enters the Hieronymite monastery of San Lorenzo de El Escorial.|
|from ca. 1757||He becomes music director and organist at the monastery. As well as sacred works, he writes operas in Castilian. He takes organ lessons with José de Nebra and meets Domenico Scarlatti.|
|from 1766||He is appointed keyboard teacher to the sons of Carlos III. He composes for and dedicates to them many sonatas, six concerti for two organs, and six quintets for organ and strings.|
|from 1776||Works as organ expert to the Cathedral in Málaga as well as the Cathedral in Seville.|
|1783||Dies at El Escorial (Madrid) on December 20.|