The violinist Emilio Moreno is one of Europe’s most distinguished performers of music from the baroque and classical periods and whose musical qualities are matched by the impact of his knowledge. Following studies in music and philosophy in his native Madrid, Moreno was taught by Jaap Schröder at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Switzerland before taking a doctorate in musicology at the Universidad Autónoma of Barcelona. He has since had many years of practical experience around the world as a soloist, conductor and partner of the very best ensembles and musicians: Frans Brüggen, Gustav Leonhardt, La Petite Bande, the Ensemble 415, La Chapelle Royale, Stravaganza Köln, etc. He currently leads the viola section of Brüggen’s Orchestra of the 18th Century.
As an eminent music researcher and musicologist, Moreno is contributing in a definitive way to the rediscovery of forgotten music from the Spanish baroque and classical periods. The outcome of his research can be heard in the many concerts and recordings he regularly produces with his ensembles La Real Cámara and, more recently, with his new period instrument orchestra, El Concierto Español. With La Real Cámara, Moreno (a founder of the Glossa label) has provided a survey of music from the times of the painter Francisco Goya, as well as notable discs devoted to the music of Luigi Boccherini (Los últimos tríos and Boccherini en Boadilla) in the company of artists such as Enrico Gatti, Wouter Müller and Gaetano Nasillo.
Moreno today teaches at the ESMUC in Barcelona, where he has been the director of the Department of Early Music. He regularly leads courses and gives master classes around the world.
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El Concierto Español, the orchestra directed by Emilio Moreno, has set itself an ambitious goal: recovering unknown and unjustly neglected repertoire from the Spanish baroque and pre-classical periods, and offering it to the public through both live performances and recordings of the highest quality. No focused attempt to do so had been undertaken by anyone before this moment, in a country still full of many forgotten musical treasures.
The orchestra was founded in 2000 by violinist Isabel Serrano, horn-player Javier Bonet and administrator Mónica Hernández along with Emilio Moreno with the purpose of bringing together their collective enthusiasms and understandings of such Spanish music and also to harness the talents of the best national specialists, of proven experience both inside and outside Spain. El Concierto Español has become a regular performer at early music festivals – such especially as that in Aranjuez – throughout Spain and outside the country too. So far, the orchestra has performed more than fifty works of composers who were active in Spain, the majority of these being modern world premières. Important composers include José de Nebra and Francesco Corselli (the subject of El Concierto Español’s initial CD for Glossa). Outside the realms of Spanish music, Moreno has directed El Concierto Español in Handel’s Water Music and Fireworks Music in front of 45,000 people in Madrid, possibly the “world record” of public attendance at an early music concert.
There is still much work to be done in creating performing editions of Baroque music originating in Spain (and then going out and performing it...), yet this is just one area of musical life today that Emilio Moreno is contributing to. To follow on from delving into the popular culture of the turn of the 19th century, as epitomized by the tonadilla, which he successfully recreated for Glossa on La Tirana contra Mambrú, Moreno – along with El Concierto Español – turns now to the world of allegorical courtly serenatas as the shifting political national landscapes of the 17th century were disintegrating into the War of the Spanish Succession. [read more...]
If Spanish music from the Renaissance has become increasingly appreciated in recent decades that from the turn of the 19th century remains a blur for many. Not so for Emilio Moreno who – in addition to his musical expertise inthe Baroque and Classical, especially that gained through long association with the Orchestra of the 18th Century – has become something of a specialist in the music of the Age of Enlightenment in Spain. Moreno has been combining Herculean labours transcribing the scores of tonadillas from two centuries past with bringing their populist texts and music to audiences of the 21st century – both with singular success. Here he describes the nature of the dramatic genre that is the tonadilla and the level of its original success acting as barometer of the feelings of the ordinary people in Spain, especially those of Madrid. [read more...]
Whether it is as a string player, as a director of ensembles like La Real Cámara or El Concierto Español, or as a teacher and a scholar Emilio Moreno has been applying his talents in the cause of the music that he loves and defends: the previously ignored area of the Spanish Baroque and pre-Classical eras. Fortunately — and through the efforts of musicians such as Moreno — this area is far less of a desert on record than it once was (for Moreno there could still be yet more concerts). Moreno’s wide experience of such music is enhanced by his long-standing involvement with Frans Brüggen’s Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century, where he is the leader of the viola section.[read more...]