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(Santiago, 1920-1924)

Prepared by Gabriel Caballero
Online only (2018)

The Chilean journal Música was published continuously on a monthly basis in Santiago from January 1920 to December 1922, under the direction of the Chilean composer/organist, Anibal Aracena Infanta. Although no numbers appeared in 1923 and 1924, a single undated number reporting on the musical and artistic events of those years, was eventually published.

Its director described it as a modest journal whose goals were: to inspire artists, to impart the accomplishments and activities of professional and amateur musicians, and to serve as an official organ of musicians. With the exception of the last issue, the format of the journal is uniform. Each issue is fifteen to sixteen numbered pages long with a musical supplement with independent numbering in the middle of each issue. These supplements feature mostly songs with piano accompaniment and instrumental pieces from both Chilean and Western European composers. Every issue contains a biographical article, highlighting the achievements of a featured musician along with its portrait on the cover page. For the most part, they are Chilean musicians; among them: Enrique Soro (composer), Amelia Cocq de Weingand (pianist), Rosita Renard (pianist), Alfonso Leng Haygus (composer), Propser Bisquer (composer), Emanuel Martínez Muñoz (baritone), María Luisa Sepúlveda Maira (composer and pianist), Américo Tritini (pianist), Claudio Arrau (pianist), Armando Carvajal (violinist), and Mercedes Santiagos (harpist). Musicians from other nationalities discussed in these biographical articles include the Argentinian composer, Alberto Williams; Pedro Traversari, Director of the National Conservatory of Music in Quito, Ecuador; and Franz Liszt.

The journal contains detailed information on conservatory training in Chile during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The events and activities of the National Conservatory of Music, including student recitals, presentations, and honorary mentions, are constantly reported, mostly in the section of “Crónicas.” News from musical institutions in regions and cities outside Santiago, such the Sociedad Musical de Aconcagua are also included. Excerpts from the book Ópera, by Salvador A. Ribera and Luis Alberto Aguila detail the history of theater in Chile. A “Literary Page” section featuring poems and short stories is also recurrent, as well as other miscellaneous sections with cooking recipes and advise for housewives.

Articles that touch on aspects of Latin American culture and music include those written by Emilio Uzcategui Garcia on Bolivian music and those that deal with Mexican composers and folk music. The activities of the Asociación Wagneriana de Buenos Aires and of the Sociedad Argentina de Música de Cámara y Sinfónica are also reported throughout the journal. Some information is taken from other periodicals such as Cultura (Mexico), La Quena, El Mercurio, and Música de América (Argentina) or books by musical critics and historians such as W. A Péres (Kefas), and Emilio Uzcátegui. The memoirs of the composer and conductor José Zapiola, taken from his book Recuerdos de treinta años, are particularly interesting, for they describe the importation of pianos and the arrival of European string quartets and operas to Chile in the early nineteenth century.