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April 2014
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A Conductor for the 21st Century

Carlos Miguel Prieto

Carlos Miguel Prieto

Wednesday at 9:00 pm

Mexican maestro Carlos Miguel Prieto is getting a lot of attention from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. The Orchestra’s audience seems to love him, he’s great with kids, and speaks Spanish—all important assets for the CSO, as the organization works to engage the greater Chicago community.

When it comes to the importance of acknowledging a community’s diverse population, Prieto not only gets it, he lives for it. As music director of the Louisiana Philharmonic, Prieto is always willing to be interviewed by school kids, or to deliver a lecture about conducting and spirituality to seminarians, or to celebrate Chinese New Year with a pipa concerto.

Since taking the Philharmonic’s helm in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, Prieto has guided the organization through temporary facilities, homeless musicians, financial ruin, and the economic downturn of 2008. With a renewed contract, his ambition is to raise musicians’ salaries, and restore the Orpheum Theater, which was badly damaged by storm.

Another one of Prieto’s pet projects is the Youth Orchestra of the Americas, which proudly fills its ranks with young players from across North and South America. It’s that chemistry he’s developed with younger players that the Chicago Symphony has harnessed for its own training orchestra, the Civic Orchestra of Chicago.

Hear Carlos Miguel Prieto lead the Civic Orchestra in Richard Strauss’s hefty tone poem Ein Heldenleben on Wednesday at 9:00 pm.

When it comes to exposing young ears to Classical music, Prieto says it’s important to trust the kids’ intelligence: “Let them explore.”

Carlos Miguel Prieto is music director of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra, Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Mexico, Orquesta Sinfónica de Minería (Mexico), and the YOA Orchestra of the Americas.

  • Adele Duffett

    I used to play this waltz and never new it wasn’t Strauss! It was attributed to him. Thanks for educating me about this! I bet this happens more often than we know! Good to discover Rosas!

    • Richard Bello

      It’s called plagiarism

      • David Latané

        There’s a difference between misattribution and plagiarism. The first is: “That’s a waltz by Strauss” spoken by anybody; the second is “I wrote this waltz,” spoken by Strauss.

      • hank lawler

        No, it’s not..Strauss was never named as the composer

    • Barrustio

      The most disheartening thing for a song writer to experience is having someone else receive credit for his work.

  • Jesus Nieto

    I’m so glad to learn about Rosas, whom I’d never heard of. It is so important for those of us from colonized groups to learn our true, beautiful past. Gracias, Isabel.

    • John

      I remember the movie about this, since my mother used to watch all those old movies in syndication, all the time………….

  • jp

    “When you are in love, it’s the loveliest night of the year.”

  • Margaret Hasselman

    OK. Now who added the lyrics “When you are in love It’s the loveliest time of the year…”?

    • Juanjo Rodríguez

      Originally, lyrics in spanish: “En la inmensidad de las olas flotando te vi, y al irte a salvar, por tu vida, la vida perdí…”

      • Alicia


  • Jonathan Lane

    so cool to learn this.

  • Richard Bello

    Now that you mentioned it the waltz does sound like Mexican music

  • Juan Carlos Carpio

    With this ¿are we discovering or uncovering Rosas?

  • nucksfan

    Blue Danube or An der schönen, blauen Donau was composed in 1866. Johann’s original sheet music is in his museum in Vienna. kind of hard for someone born 2 years after that to have composed it first. ???????

    • modernhumor

      The Blue Danube is a different waltz altogether.

      • nucksfan

        But if in Court for a copyright violation today with even a average lawyer Johann would be getting a settlement .. pretty obvious entire parts were copied. Kind of like stealing Air force One and putting fuzzy dice in the cockpit and hoping no one notices.

      • Barrustio

        Wonder who Strauss stole from.

  • Raymond Leo’s Garcia Jr.

    When I was in the Navy, I sometimes thought about this beautiful waltz as I traveled SOBRE LAS OLAS.

  • James r Gonzales sr


  • DrCintli

    Sounds like theft of Indigenous intellectual property. But as someone noted: what’s new?

  • biggeorge3

    The headline says “THIS waltz” but the article goes on about “THE waltz”.
    Rosas was a fine composer but did not invent the form as it existed in Europe in the 1500s.

  • Lourdes Mordini

    I always knew who the author of this waltz was, and I used to play it when I took piano lessons in my youth. In Ecuador.

  • Kim Serrahn

    Wow!. Learn something new every day.

  • hank lawler

    as a musician in the union for over 50 years, the composer’s name on this waltz has always been Rosas. The article has sucked a majority of you into thinking he was ripped off..very crappy journalism, but just enough gossip to get everyone’s gums flapping..ok..what’s (who’s) on tomorrow’s menu?