Bernal Jiménez, Miguel (1910–1956)

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Bernal Jiménez, Miguel (1910–1956)

Miguel Bernal Jiménez (b. 16 February 1910; d. 12 July 1956), Mexican composer and musicologist. Born in Morelia, Michoacán, Bernal Jiménez started his musical career as a choirboy at the Morelia cathedral and began musical studies at the Colegio de Infantes with Mier y Arriaga and Aguilera Ruiz. Later he entered the Escuela Superior de Música Sagrada in Morelia. After his graduation in 1928 he went to Rome to study organ, composition, Gregorian chant, and musicology at the Pontificio Istituto di Musica Sacra, graduating in 1933. He returned to Morelia, where he began teaching at the Escuela Superior de Música Sagrada, where in 1936 he became director. While there, he started the magazine Schola Cantorum. During this period he toured Mexico and the United States, performing organ concerts, conducting choirs, and giving lectures. From 1954 to 1956 he was dean of music at Loyola University in New Orleans, where he taught until his death in León, Guanajuato, Mexico.

Bernal wrote several works for the stage, among them Tata Vasco (1941), an opera commemorating the fourth centenary of the arrival of Vasco de Quiroga, first bishop of Michoacán, and two ballets: Tingambato (1943), based on a Tarascan legend, and Los tres galanes de Juana (1952). He also wrote the Suite michoacana (1940), and Noche en Morelia (1941), as well as a considerable number of major compositions and sacred vocal music. He has also written a number of important musicological essays based on his researches.

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B. I. Harrison, "Old Mexican Organs," in Diapason 56 (June 1955): 35.

M. Querol Gavaldá, "Bernal Jiménez, Miguel: La técnica de los compositores," in Anuario Musical 10 (1955): 224ff.; New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, vol. 2 (1980).

Additional Bibliography

Díaz Núñez, Lorena. Como un eco lejano: La vida de Miguel Bernal Jiménez. México, D.F.: Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y Artes, 2003.

                                          Susana Salgado

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Bernal Jiménez, Miguel (1910–1956)

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