Carlos Chávez (by Carl van Vechten in 1937)

Carlos Chávez [Carlos Antonio de Padua Chávez y Ramírez], was born 120 years ago on June 13, 1899 and died on August 2, 1978.


Chávez was an important Mexican composer who wrote extensively for the piano as well as chamber and choir music, 6 symphonies and 5 ballets. Incidentally, he was a prominent student of the piano under Manuel María Ponce, and wrote 2 pieces for the guitar.


First, his Tres piezas para guitarra [Three pieces for Guitar] of 1923. According to guitarist Adam Brown, it was initially left unfinished until 1954, when Mexican guitarist Jesus Silva requested a piece from Chávez. Second, his Feuille d’album [Hoja de álbum in Spanish or Album Page in English] of 1974 . I found 13 recordings of the first and none of the second.


I recommend Manuel Barrueco’s thoughtful recording of the Tres piezas(VoxBox 3/ Turnabout-Vox • CD3X 3007) played on the late Robert Ruck guitar No. 58 built in 1972.


Sources :

About the Tres piezas :



Otero, CorazónManuel M. Ponce and the Guitar, 1983.Page 13


About the Ruck guitar :

Noted Luthier Robert Ruck (Builder of Manuel Barrueco’s Famous ‘No. 58’) Passes Away at 72