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Palomino, Jos
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Palomino, Jos
(b Madrid, 1755; d Las Palmas, 9 April 1810). Spanish composer. His skill as a violinist earned him a place in the
Spanish royal chapel at an early age. A pupil of Rodrguez de Hita, he had early success composing tonadillas,
including the popular El canap (1767); these apparently attracted the Madrid nobility and some were listed among
the music of the 12th Duke of Alba. In 1774 Palomino emigrated to Lisbon, where he became a member of the S
Cecilia brotherhood on 21 March. By 1785 he was a virtuoso instrumentalist of the royal chapel; the fine Portuguese
violinist Incio Jos Mara de Freitas was among his students. On 15 June 1785 his serenata Il ritorno di Astrea in
terra, celebrating the double marriages of the Portuguese and Spanish infantes, was produced at the Spanish
embassy under the auspices of the ambassador, Count Fernn Nuez, grandee of Spain. It so delighted his
audience that he was given an elegant box containing 4000 duros as well as special pensions. His intermezzos and
Portuguese entremeses were produced in the theatres for national music, the Teatro do Salitre and Teatro de Rua
dos Condes. Despite the insanity of Maria I in 1792, Palomino remained at the court, petitioning for Portuguese
citizenship after 28 years of service. According to contemporaries, he played in one of the best court orchestras in
Europe; but in addition he served as orchestral leader at both theatres for national music. He left Lisbon about 1807
8 when the royal family fled the Napoleonic invasion. He accepted the post of maestro de capilla in Las Palmas for a
salary equivalent to 20,000 reales, and died two years later.

Palominos vocal writing is characterized by a melodic focus with little polyphony. Frequently, melodies are strung
together by small rhythmic motifs. There are prominent ensemble sets, possibly influenced by his comic works such
as the popular Os amantes astuts (P-Ln) and O enganno aparente (both 1793, for the Salitre theatre). Another
entrems (for the Rua dos Condes), As Regatieras zelozas (1801; Ln), featured a fashionable Brazilian modinha (a
sentimental art song).

In addition to his serenata (P-Ln, La), his most significant remaining work, three songs were published in the Jornal
de modhinas, and three duets and six modhinas survive in manuscript (in E-Mn 2261). Three tonadillas, including El
canap (ed. in J. Subir: La tonadilla escnica, iii, Madrid, 1930), are identified as his among manuscripts in the
Biblioteca Municipal, Madrid, as well as two by Antonio Palomino and five others ascribed merely to Palomino. A
four-voice motet, at Lisbon Cathedral, is his only extant sacred work. Of his instrumental works, a concerto or quintet
for keyboard and strings, an incomplete duet for violin and keyboard (both 1785; P-Ln) and a piano sonata (La) have
survived.

Bibliography
DBP

GroveO (E. Russell)

[J. Vasconcellos:]Catalogue des livres rares composant la bibliothque musicale dun amateur (Oporto, 1898), 189

J. Subir: La tonadilla escnica: sus obras y sus autores (Barcelona, 1933), 51, 1224

J. Subir: El Teatro del Real Palacio, 18491851 (Madrid, 1950), 68, 74

M.C. de Brito: Opera in Portugal in the Eighteenth Century (Cambridge, 1989), 72, 159

Eleanor Russell
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