Joan Albert Amargós

b. 1950



Amargos’ musical career has been greatly influenced by not only classical music, but also by jazz and popular music. The influence of composers such as Hindemith, Dutilleux, Henze and Berio can be heard in his compositions and affected his way of understanding music in spirit and construction. He is greatly interested in the relationship between art and the public and explores music which draws him nearer to the listener. He has immersed himself in numerous diverse projects including classical composition, jazz composition and performance, recordings, flamenco music.


Born in Barcelona, a composer and clarinet player, Amargos studied music in the Superior Liceo Conservatory in Barcelona, graduating in 1972. The influences that have marked and driven his musical career could be summarised as a combination of well-defined terms. First of all the classical area, closer to symphonic music and to contemporary composition, was initially influenced by composers such as Hindemith, Dutilleux, Henze, and by Berio who deeply determined his way of understanding music both in spirit and construction. Highlights of this strain of work include Sis cançons d’homenatge a Picasso (1974), Sonata para flauta y piano (1979) which won first prize in the Concurso de las juventudes Musicales de Barcelona, Sonata per a orquestra (1981), and finally La cantata de la terra, for chorus, soloist and orchestra.

Based on his thoughts over the relationship between a work of art and the public, he was forced to explore a type of music which would draw him nearer to the listener without abandoning the classical language. His studies as an instrumentalist would make this process easier and his compositions both in jazz as well as his connection with popular music have made him stand out as a composer in these fields.

In the jazz world he has been continually involved in the creation of groups: Musica Urbana in 1975 and Factoria Musical in 1979 amongst others, and the publication of various records, receiving in 1986 together with Carles Benavent the prize for best jazz music album of the year granted by the Ministry of Culture. In 1988 he won the prize for contemporary jazz composition from the Asociacion Cultural Plato with the work Hasta siempre Jaco, for Big Band. As an arranger he has worked with artists such as Camaron de la Isla and Paco de Lucia, which has allowed him to enter the world of Cante Flamenco and explore the roots of autochthonous music. Regarding the artist relationship of these past years and flamenco music he said, ‘To work with Carles Benavent has helped me to write my Concierto del Sur, a piece of music immersed in the flamenco music world’. In 1985 he was commissioned by the Ballet Nacional, resulting in the work TARANTOS for symphonic orchestra in collaboration with Paco de Lucia, premiered in the Teatro de la Zarzuela in Madrid in 1986. He has been first clarinet of the Teatre Lliure chamber orchestra, performing as soloist on numerous occasions with repertoire from 20th century composers.

In 1994 the Andalusian Dance Company commissioned from him a Requiem for choir and orchestra, premiered in the Maestranza Theatre in Seville under the conductor Mariol Naya. The record company Harmonia Mundi published in 1995 the recording of his Concierto for Clarinet and Orchestra, performed by the Teatre Lliure orchestra with Walter Boeykens as soloist and conducted by Josep Pons.



There are no upcoming performances