Chueca, Federico, Spanish composer; b. Madrid, May 5, 1846; d. there, June 20, 1908. He was a medical student. He organized a band at the Univ. of Madrid, also conducted theater orchs. He began to compose for the stage in collaboration with Valverde, who helped him to harmonize and orchestrate his melodies. Thanks to his prodigious facility, he wrote a great number of zarzuelas, of which La gran via, produced in Madrid (July 2, 1886), became his greatest success, obtaining nearly 1, 000 performances in Madrid alone; it has also been performed many times in Latin America and the U.S. The march from his zarzuela Cadiz served for a time as the Spanish national anthem; dances from his El año pasado por agua and Locuras madrileñas also enjoyed great popularity. Chueca is regarded as one of the creators of the “género chico” (light genre) of Spanish stage music.
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire