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July 31st marks the birthday of Cuban composer and musician Ignacio Cervantes. Born in 1847, Cervantes was famed for combining traditional Cuban sounds within classical music. He was also a figure in the struggle for Cuban independence from Spain by performing concerts in the U.S. and Mexico to raise funds for the rebel cause.
Perhaps his best known work was his series of Danzas Cubanas including six of them that are featured in the following video from pianist Silvia Navarrete:
Cervantes died in 1905, which was nearly seven years after Cuba became its own independent country.
"De Musica Ligera" is our occasional series that examines music from the Americas. It's also the title of a song from Argentine rock group Soda Stereo.
Video Source - YouTube via user silvianavarretepiano
Online Source - Wikipedia