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Cabezón (Cabeçon), Antonio de

organist madrid court spanish

Cabezón (Cabeçon), Antonio de, great Spanish organist and composer; b. Castrillo de Matajudios, near Burgos, 1510; d. Madrid, March 26, 1566. He became blind in infancy; went to Palencia about 1521 to study with the Cathedral organist Garcia de Baeza and with Tomás Gómez. He was appointed organist to the court of the Emperor Charles V and Empress Isabella (1526); after her death, Cabezón entered the service of Prince Philip and accompanied him to Italy, Germany, the Netherlands (1548–51), and England (1554); he returned to Spain (1556) and remained court organist until his death. His keyboard style greatly influenced the development of organ composition on the Continent and the composers for the virginal in England; Pedrell called him “the Spanish Bach.” The series Libro de Cifra Nueva (1557), which contains the earliest eds. of Ca-bezón’s works, was reprinted by H. Angles in La música en la corte de Carlos V (1944). His son and successor at the court of Philip II, Hernando (b. Madrid; baptized, Sept. 7, 1541; d. Valladolid, Oct. 1, 1602), publ. his instrumental works as Obras de música para tecla, arpa y vihuela (Madrid, 1578). This vol. contains exercises in two and three parts, arrangements of hymn tunes, four-part “tientos,” arrangements of motets in up to six parts by Josquin and other Franco-Flemish composers, and variations on tunes of the day (El caballero, etc.). See Cabezón’s Collected Works (C. Jacobs, éd.; N.Y., 1967–76).

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