Montsalvatge's career is a rich one that is largely unknown outside the Iberian peninsula, as a lingering result of a fratricidal civil war and four decades of an isolating political regime. Its importance in enlarging the musical history of Europe is substantial, but it is at least equally important as offering a gateway to a rich historical and cultural milieu: that of Barcelona, which is increasingly taking its place as a center of the fine arts, design, and modern architecture, while the rich musical life -- distinct from but related to the better-known strands of France and Spain -- still requires introduction to much of the world; Montsalvatge's life holds interest as a story representing one man's ways of negotiating the perils and opportunities that confronted him in a period whose secrets are still being revealed. An exploration of the variety and excellence of Montsalvatge's musical output justifies this first introduction in English to the body of work of an artist and writer whose assumption of his place among the acknowledged international greats is overdue.
May 2, 2012
Journalists too have a role in advancing musical thought. Xavier Montsalvatge: A Musical Life in Eventful Times discusses the place of the musical journalist who showed pride in his Catalan heritage even in the face of the Francisco Franco's anti-Catalan Spaniard's stances. Throughout the twentieth century, his work in musical journalism offers insight into the world's music, making for a fascinating insight. Xavier Montsalvatge is a strong addition to international biography collections as well as musical journalism collections.
James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief Midwest Book Review
“The Biography Shelf” Library Bookwatch
A musicologist, harpsichordist, and organist whose writings and recordings have extended from music of the Middle Ages to that of the twentieth century. He has taught at the City University of New York and the University of Pittsburgh and is currently writing a book about politics and culture in the twentieth-century Spanish state. He maintains a site on the Web at www.rogerevansonline.com .