Imagine a world where playing the piano was not only a taboo for women but also socially unacceptable. This was the world that Amparo Iturbi was born in, in Valencia, Spain, in 1898. However, Amparo did not let societal norms stop her from pursuing her dream of becoming a one-of-a-kind pianist, entertainer, and trailblazer.
Amparo Iturbi’s flamboyance and showmanship was uncommon for women of her time. She not only captivated audiences with her music but also her dramatic flair, elegance, and charm. This blog post sheds light on the fascinating story of Amparo Iturbi and her journey to becoming an acclaimed pianist and musical trailblazer.
Amparo Iturbi’s Early Life
Amparo Iturbi was one of four children born to a family of musicians. Her father, Luis, was an accomplished pianist, her mother, Matilde, was a singer, and her older brother, José, had a budding career as a pianist.
At the tender age of four, Amparo began playing the piano, and it was clear that she was a musical prodigy. Her father trained her, and she quickly surpassed her older brother in piano playing abilities.
Despite her talent, Amparo faced societal critics who believed playing the piano was not a hobby for women. However, this never deterred her, and she continued to practice full-time.
By the age of twelve, Amparo was already performing in Spain and touring the world with her father, gaining significant recognition in the music industry. During a tour in South America, she caught the attention of the famous Spanish playwright, Jacinto Benavente, who went on to write a book about her.
After touring the world with her father, Amparo did something radical for a woman of her time. She moved to New York City to pursue her dream of a solo career. It was a tumultuous start, but Amparo soon began performing in famous music halls, such as Carnegie Hall, and gained a huge American following.
Breaking Barriers for Women
Amparo Iturbi was unstoppable when it came to her passion for music. However, the music industry at the time had rigid beliefs that held women back from succeeding. She refused to conform to society’s expectations and became the first woman to perform a concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra in 1927.
Amparo also broke records when she became the first woman to conduct a major orchestra in the United States. Together with her brother, she founded the Iturbi Music Festival for young musicians, giving them an opportunity to showcase their talent.
Amparo Iturbi’s passion for music took up most of her time and energy. However, she managed to find love in the form of a Cuban banker. In 1929, the couple got married, but their time together was short-lived. Her husband passed away in 1933, leaving Amparo widowed at a young age.
Despite the heartbreak, Amparo continued to shine, and her music continued to inspire many women worldwide.
Later Career and Legacy
Amparo Iturbi’s later career took her to Hollywood, where she made several appearances in movies and television shows. She also recorded music for record labels, including the Victor Talking Machine Company.
Amparo Iturbi continued to inspire women to pursue a career in music, and she remains an influential musician whose legacy has lived on for generations. Today, the Amparo Iturbi Foundation keeps her memory alive and provides young musicians with opportunities in music.
Q1: What made Amparo Iturbi a trailblazer?
A: Amparo Iturbi was a trailblazer because she refused to let societal norms dictate her passion for music. She broke barriers and shattered the glass ceiling for women in the music industry.
Q2:What was Amparo Iturbi’s biggest accomplishment?
A: Amparo broke records when she became the first woman to perform a concerto with the Philadelphia Orchestra in 1927.
Q3:Did Amparo Iturbi face any obstacles in her career?
A: Despite her talent, Amparo faced societal critics who believed playing the piano was not a hobby for women. However, this never deterred her, and she continued to practice full-time.
Q4:How did Amparo Iturbi inspire women?
A: Amparo Iturbi’s flamboyance and showmanship inspired women worldwide to pursue a career in music and break barriers in the music industry.
Q5:What was Amparo Iturbi’s personal life like?
A: Amparo Iturbi found love in the form of a Cuban banker. In 1929, the couple got married, but their time together was short-lived. Her husband passed away in 1933, leaving Amparo widowed at a young age.
Q6:Where can I find information about the Iturbi Music Festival?
A: Information on the Iturbi Music Festival can be found online on their official website.
Q7:How has Amparo Iturbi’s legacy impacted the music industry?
A: Amparo Iturbi’s legacy continues to inspire young musicians to pursue their passion for music and to not let societal norms hold them back.
Amparo Iturbi was a musical trailblazer who refused to let societal norms hold her back from pursuing her passion for music. Her story is a true testament to the power of passion and perseverance. Today, the Amparo Iturbi Foundation keeps her memory alive and provides young musicians with opportunities in music. Amparo Iturbi’s legacy continues to inspire generations to pursue their passion regardless of any roadblocks in their way.