Cristóbal de Morales

de Morales

Cristóbal de Morales (1500?-1553) was a Spanish composer of the Renaissance. He is generally considered to be the most influential Spanish composer before Tomás Luis de Victoria. Almost all of his music is sacred, and all of it is vocal, though instruments may have been used in an accompanying role. He wrote many masses, some of spectacular difficulty, most likely written for the expert papal choir; he wrote over 100 motets; and he wrote 18 settings of the Magnificat, and at least five settings of the Lamentations of Jeremiah (one of which survives from a single manuscript in Mexico). The Magnificats alone set him apart from other composers of the time, and they are the portion of his work most often performed today.  Morales was the first Spanish composer of international renown. His works were widely distributed in Europe, and many copies made the journey to the New World. Many music writers and theorists in the hundred years after his death considered his music to be among the most perfect of the time.