Manuel Moreno-Buendía

From Unearthing The Music

Manuel Moreno-Buendía. Photo sourced from

Manuel Moreno-Buendía (b. March 25th 1932) is a composer and bandleader. He was the last composer to premiere a zarzuela at the Teatro de la Zarzuela, with Fuenteovejuna in 1981, a date which many musicologists have declared as the end of the creation of this Spanish lyrical scenic genre.


Manuel Moreno-Buendía was born in Murcia but his family moved to Madrid in 1942. He studied at the Madrid Conservatory where he had Conrado del Campo as a composition teacher, opera and zarzuelero.

In 1957 he belonged to the so-called Grupo Nueva Música, a group whose purpose would be to update Spanish classical music, and whose members included composers such as Luis de Pablo, Antón García Abril or Cristóbal Halffter belong to it , and musicians such as Manuel Carra or Alberto Blancafort.

Between 1970 and 1981 he served as musical director of the Teatro de la Zarzuela . Since 1980 he has been Professor of Harmony at the Superior Conservatory of Music in Madrid.

Manuel Moreno-Buendía sought to update the zarzuela. Although in the 60s he composed pieces like Carolina when the zarzuelistic genre was already beginning to languish, it would be in the following decade that he created a series of renewed zarzuelas (they contained elements of the musical, dance, the singers only had a lyrical role), with The Island of Impossible Dreams (1971), Los Vagabundos (1977) based on a text by Máximo Gorki, and Fuenteovejuna (1981) based on the homonymous work by Lope de Vega.

He composed various pieces off music for the stage, like the ballet Eterna Castilla for Antonio El Bailarín, which premiered in 1964 at the Teatro de la Scala in Milan. He also composed incidental music for various works such as Ligazón (1969) or Antonio y Cleopatra.

In the symphonic field, a few stand outs include the Suite concertanta for harp and orchestra, composed in 1958 and for which he received the National Music Prize, the Children's Songs for voice and piano (1956) and the Good Love Concert for guitar and orchestra (1992), inspired by the work of Juan Ruíz (the Archpriest of Hita).


  1. ALIER, Rober (2002): La Zarzuela . Barcelona: Robinbook editions.

External links

Text adapted from the Spanish Wikipedia