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Mario Castelnuovo Tedesco Program Notes and Sheet Music

Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco (April 3, 1895 – March 16, 1968) was an Italian composer, pianist, and writer. He was known as one of the foremost guitar composers in the 20th century, with almost one hundred compositions for that instrument.

Castelnuovo-Tedesco was born in Florence, Italy, to a Jewish family. He began studying music at a young age, and by the age of 15 he was giving concerts as a pianist. In 1915 he enrolled in the Royal Conservatory of Music in Florence, where he studied composition with Ildebrando Pizzetti.

After graduating from the conservatory, Castelnuovo-Tedesco began composing for film and theater. In 1939, he immigrated to the United States to escape the rise of fascism in Italy. In Hollywood, he worked as a film composer for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, writing music for over 200 films.

In addition to his work in film, Castelnuovo-Tedesco also continued to compose concert music. He wrote concertos for a variety of instruments, including the guitar, violin, cello, and piano. He also wrote chamber music, orchestral music, and vocal music.

Castelnuovo-Tedesco's music is characterized by its technical virtuosity and its use of folk and popular elements. He was a master of the guitar, and his compositions for that instrument are some of the most challenging and rewarding in the repertoire.

Castelnuovo-Tedesco died in Beverly Hills, California, in 1968. He is considered one of the most important composers of the 20th century, and his music is still performed and enjoyed by audiences around the world.

Here are some of Castelnuovo-Tedesco's most famous works:

  • Guitar Concerto No. 1 in D major, Op. 99
  • Quintet for Guitar and Strings, Op. 143
  • Romancero Gitano
  • Suite for Guitar, Op. 23
  • Three Pieces for Guitar, Op. 6
  • Twelve Preludes and Fugues for Guitar, Op. 119
    Castelnuovo-Tedesco-Mario (1895-1968)      
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