Pablo Casals Pablo Casals (sometimes called his original name Pau Carlos Salvidor Defillo De Casals) was one of, if not, the greatest cellist in history. Casals is easily recognized as one of the master soloists of classical music and he has many accomplishments in his many years as a public figure that have made him internationally renowned. Casals was born in Vendrell, Spain on December 29, 1876. He received his very first music lessons from his father (a music teacher), on the violin. A four years after that, at the age of twelve, Casals realized he would much rather play the cello instead, and begin lessons with that instrument.
After nine years of study on the playing and the designing of the instrument at the Madrid Conservatory, Casals decided to improve the sound of the cello by making important modifications on the techniques of playing it. For this first accomplishment Casals made, which he thought of simply as “necessary to my performance”, Pablo Casals was widely acclaimed as a master. He received even more acclaim just after his first performance in Paris on 1898, this sparked his long and monuments career. Soon Casals began a great deal of touring across Europe and the Americas, making his fresh, new style increasingly more and more popular. Because of his popularity, at the time, the solo cellist performer became a very highly thought of occupation.
After his long tour, Casals met and then joined up with two other famous and acclaimed French performers. These were the violinist Jacques Thibaud and the pianist Alfred Cortot. Together, these three became a trio that gained international fame as they began touring again for a long period of time. Casals began his second career as a conductor in 1908. Then in the year 1919, he founded and he subsidized the “Orquestra Pau Casals” in Barcelona. This was designed specifically to help young talented, and struggling musicians.
The next Occupation that casals took was composing. Doing this, he wrote the famous “El Pesebre” (The Manager), which is still listened to widely in Spain, even today. Casals wrote and preformed many other pieces of music that are commonly taught in music school in Spain, today. Being an ardent opponent of Fascism, Casals exiled himself from Spain. He did this in a protest against the regime of Frincisco Franco. For a time, he even stopped performing altogether. After this long exile, in the 1950’s Casals began being active in music again and he organized and ran many series of musical festivals in France and Puerto Rico. In putting together these performances, Casals found a certain need inside himself to accept any young talented performer in to these shows.
These performances led up to Casals final performance in 1960 with the Marlboro Festival in Vermont. Pablo Casals died in Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, on October 22, 1973 at the age on ninety-seven. In my opinion, after reading the information that I could find on Pablo Casals, I realized what an amazingly distinguished and successful career as a cellist (he had also been an incredible conductor, composer, pianist, humanist, and admired public figure), I hope that my dream for an occupation is even half as successful as his was. He was definitely one of the most influential men of the early half of the twentieth century. BIBLIOGRAPHY 1.
Phillips, S. “Funk and Wagnall’s New World Encyclopedia”, Running Press, New York 1982 2. James, M. “Conversations with Casals”, Grace Books, New York, 1962.