Antonio Soler

Biography

Born: December 3, 1729; Olot, Gerona, Spain   Died: December 20, 1783; El Escorial, Spain  
Antonio Francisco Javier Jose Soler was an eighteenth century Catalan composer, priest, monk, student, teacher, mathematician, inventor, and organist. His life was spent serving both the Catholic Church and music. He was a prolific composer with over 400 compositions credited to him by the time of his death at age 54. Soler spent most of his life at monasteries, particularly El Escorial, the magnificent royal palace, chapel, and monastery built Read more by King Philip II outside of Madrid two centuries earlier.

Soler apparently came from a musical family. His brother, Mateu, played bassoon in the monastery of Las Descalzas Reales and then in the court of Carlos III, and finally in the Capilla Real. His musical training began at a very early age. In 1736, he became a student at the Benedictine monastery choir school at Montserrat where he learned organ and composition. Between 1752 and 1757, while in his early twenties, Soler studied with Domenico Scarlatti, the Italian composer who served the Spanish court of Ferdinand VI and Maria Barbara.

Prior to going to El Escorial, where he spent the rest of his life, Soler was the maestro de capilla at Lerida and was ordained subdeacon in 1752. Later that same year, he joined the Hieronymite order of monks at El Escorial monastery and professed to the order in 1753.

Soler performed many duties at El Escorial. In 1757, he became maestro de capilla. In addition, he performed as first organist, wrote much of the church music, and taught music. Perhaps his most prestigious student was the son of Carlos III, Don Gabriel de Bourbon. Soler taught the young Don Gabriel keyboard and many of the Soler's harpsichord sonatas were written for him.

It is difficult for most to grasp Soler's level of productivity, particularly in light of his many other duties and interests. His musical compositions included over 120 sonatas for harpsichord, six quintets for organ and strings, six double organ concertos, 10 masses, five requiems, 132 villancicos, and many other works. His most famous was a sonata for harpsichord entitled Fandango.

Soler also wrote a treatise on harmony, Llave de la Modulación (1762) whose concepts remain valid today. This treatise, however, caused considerable controversy and rebuke by some of his peers. These criticisms caused Soler such dismay that in 1765, he responded with a written retort, Satisfacción a los reparos precisos, which spanned 67 pages and was supported by such noted authorities as Morales, Palestrina, and Scarlatti. The controversy did not end until a final defense was provided in Jose Vila's Respuestra y dictamen in 1766.

He developed another treatise in 1771 that demonstrated his interest and skill in mathematics. This book was on Castilian and Catalan currency exchange and was published in honor of Carlos III. Soler was a man of other talents in addition to those mentioned. He invented a tuning box that was used to demonstrate differences between tones and semitones to Don Gabriel. He was also expert in organ design and construction. In 1776, he developed the specifications for an organ for the Malaga Cathedral. Read less
Soler: Keyboard Sonatas Nos. 63-66 / Khristenko
Release Date: 12/02/2016   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8573564   Number of Discs: 1
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Soler: Sonatas For Harpsichord Vol 3 / Gilbert Rowland
Release Date: 10/05/2000   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8553464   Number of Discs: 1
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Soler: Sonatas For Harpsichord Vol 1 / Gilbert Rowland
Release Date: 06/18/1996   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8553462   Number of Discs: 1
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Soler: Sonatas For Harpsichord Vol 8 / Gilbert Rowland
Release Date: 04/16/2002   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8555031   Number of Discs: 1
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Soler: Sonatas For Harpsichord Vol 12 / Gilbert Rowland
Release Date: 11/21/2006   Label: Naxos  
Catalog: 8557937   Number of Discs: 1
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Browse 1-25 of 95 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas Nos. 63-66 / Khristenko
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8573564 Release Date: 12/02/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Stanislav Khristenko
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  • 2.
    Soler: 6 Concertos for 2 Harpsichords / Alvarez, Fernandez-Villacanas
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 95327 Release Date: 10/28/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Agustín Álvarez,  Eusebio Fernández-Villacañas
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  • 3.
    A Musical Journey Around Europe / Lester
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 5939 Release Date: 06/10/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Luzzasco Luzzaschi,  Girolamo Frescobaldi,  Claudio Merulo,  Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck  ... 
    Performer:  Richard Lester,  Elizabeth Lester
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  • 4.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas / Hinterhuber
    Label: Paladino Music   Catalog: 0042 Release Date: 04/08/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Christopher Hinterhuber
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  • 5.
    John Williams: The Complete Columbia Album Collection [58 CD + 1 DVD]
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 309294 Release Date: 03/04/2016   Number of Discs: 59
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Isaac Albeniz,  Francisco Tarrega,  Joaquin Turina  ... 
    Performer:  John Williams,  Julian Bream,  Carlos Bonell,  Brian Gascoigne  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Charles Groves,  Daniel Barenboim,  John Williams,  Louis Frémaux  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  English Chamber Orchestra,  London Sinfonietta,  String Orchestra  ... 
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  • 6.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas Nos. 57-62 / Colic
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8573544 Release Date: 01/08/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Mladen Colic
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  • 7.
    Soler: Harpsichord Sonatas 1-120 / Barbara Harbach
    Label: Msr   Catalog: 1300 Release Date: 06/02/2015   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Barbara Harbach
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  • 8.
    Soler: Complete Keyboard Sonatas; Six Concertos for Two Organs
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 95143 Release Date: 04/28/2015   Number of Discs: 9
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Pieter-Jan Belder,  Maurizio Croci,  Pieter Van Dijk
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  • 9.
    Chopin: 24 Preludes / Lefevre
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 29287 Release Date: 11/17/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Alain Lefèvre
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  • 10.
    Piano Musique Espagnole, Vol. 2 / Rosa Maria Kucharski
    Label: Claudio   Catalog: 43212 Release Date: 11/11/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler,  Anonymous,  Jose Larrañaga,  Isaac Albeniz  ... 
    Performer:  Rosa Maria Kucharski
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  • 11.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas Nos. 42-56 / Mateusz Borowiak
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 573281 Release Date: 10/14/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Mateusz Borowiak
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  • 12.
    Erato - 50 CD Collection
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 46441 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Tomaso Albinoni,  Giuseppe Tartini,  Georg Philipp Telemann,  Giuseppe Torelli  ... 
    Performer:  Maurice André,  Pierre Pierlot,  Paul Hongne,  Jacques Chambon  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner,  Jean-François Paillard,  Frigyes Sándor,  Kent Nagano  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields Chamber Ens.,  Paillard Chamber Orchestra,  Vienna Soloists  ... 
    On sale! $299.98
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  • 13.
    Magnificat / Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 30555 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Alessandro Melani,  Claudio Monteverdi,  Alessandro Scarlatti,  Pietro Paolo Bencini  ... 
    Performer:  Roberta Invernizzi,  Daniele Carnovich,  Monica Piccinini,  Anna Simboli  ... 
    Conductor:  Rinaldo Alessandrini
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Concerto Italiano
    CD: $48.99
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  • 14.
    Soler: 13 Sonatas
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 933392 Release Date: 08/27/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Marie-Luise Hinrichs
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  • 15.
    A Spanish Album - Soler, Falla, Turina, Lecuona / Rodriguez
    Label: Elan Recordings   Catalog: 2206 Release Date: 07/16/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ernesto Lecuona,  Antonio Soler,  Joaquin Turina,  Manuel de Falla
    Performer:  Santiago Rodriguez
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  • 16.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas Nos. 28-41 / Denis Zhdanov
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8573084 Release Date: 05/28/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Denis Zhdanov
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  • 17.
    Walt Disney Concert Hall Organ
    Label: Kultur Video   Catalog: 4789 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Nicolaus Bruhns,  Dietrich Buxtehude,  Antonio Soler,  Henri Mulet  ... 
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  • 18.
    Soler: Sonatas For Harpsichord / Rowland
    Label: Nimbus   Catalog: 7725 Release Date: 08/14/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Gilbert Rowland
    CD: $14.99
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  • 19.
    Baroque Conversations / David Greilshammer
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 792969 Release Date: 07/31/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean-Philippe Rameau,  Morton Feldman,  Antonio Soler,  François Couperin  ... 
    Performer:  David Greilsammer
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  • 20.
    Harpsichord Music From England, Spain And Portugal / Ruzickova
    Label: Supraphon   Catalog: 4118 Release Date: 07/24/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  John Dowland,  Ferdinando Richardson,  Anonymous,  John Bull  ... 
    Performer:  Zuzana Ruzicková
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  • 21.
    Los Pajaros Perdidos / Christina Pluhar, L'arpeggiata
    Label: Erato   Catalog: 6785162 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Ariel Ramirez,  Astor Piazzolla,  Constantino Ramones  ... 
    Performer:  Philippe Jaroussky,  Lucilla Galeazzi,  Luciana Mancini,  Quito Gato  ... 
    Conductor:  Christina Pluhar
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  L'Arpeggiata
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  • 22.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas No 16-27 / Vestard Shimkus
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8572516 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Vestard Shimkus
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  • 23.
    P. Fr. Antonio Soler: El Diablo Vestido De Fraile
    Label: Pan Classics   Catalog: 10201 Release Date: 01/01/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Diego Ares
    CD: $18.99
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  • 24.
    Soler: Keyboard Sonatas No 1-15 / Martina Filjak
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8572515 Release Date: 08/30/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonio Soler
    Performer:  Martina Filjak
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  • 25.
    Organ Concertos - Brixi, Handel, Haydn, Soler, Vivaldi
    Label: Brilliant Classics   Catalog: 94099 Release Date: 06/28/2011   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Franz Xaver Brixi,  George Frideric Handel,  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Antonio Soler  ... 
    Performer:  Christian Schmitt,  Charlotte Balzereit,  Anton Holzapfel,  Susanne Scholz  ... 
    Conductor:  Nicol Matt,  Federico Guglielmo
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  European Chamber Soloists,  Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra,  Dolce Risonanza  ... 
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