Juan Trigos, Mexican-American composer and conductor born in Mexico City in 1965, is an active composer, creator of the concept Abstract Folklore, a process in which he abstracts and assimilates various literary and vernacular musical traditions into a modern compositional rhetoric. Some of the principles behind this concept are elements such as primary pulsation, the resonance and the interrelation of polyrhythmic/polyphonic musical events and segments of different density and duration.
As a composer, whose work has been performed worldwide, two fundamental aspects distinguish his musical production: vocal music (opera and sacred) and instrumental music with a notable predilection for the concertante forms. His more relevant works include three symphonies, four operas, DeCachetitoRaspado (CheekToStubbledCheek) and the trilogy Mis Dos Cabezas Piensan Peor Que Una (My Two Heads Think Worse Than One), three Concertante Cantatas, concertos for several instruments and his production for guitar. Important orchestras and institutions had commissioned him music compositions. Among the latest and successful commissions his Cantata Concertante N.3, Phos Hilaron, for the Diocesan Institute of Music and Liturgy (chamber version 2011) and the SNCA (orchestral version 2013). His Concerto for Four Guitars for the “Orchestra Sinfonica Tito Schipa” (2010). His Symphony N.3 Ofrenda a los muertos for the Houston Symphony (2013), performed also by Orquesta Sinfónica de Guanajuato (2013), Orquesta Sinfónica de Nuevo León (2014) and Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra (November 1st, 2014). In 2014 his Sinfonia Breve for the University of Central Florida, performed also by Orquesta Sinfónica de Sinaloa de las Artes (Mexico) and Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional (Guatemala); and his Clarinet Concerto for the Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte premiered by Camerata de Coahuila (Mexico) and recorded by Orquesta Sinfónica de Heredia (Costa Rica).
Trigos as a conductor has premiered, promoted, and recorded an extensive catalogue of new works with numerous choirs and orchestras around the world. As the Music Director and Principal Conductor of the orchestra Sinfónica de Oaxaca (Mexico), among other successful projects, during the 2016 Trigos recorded, for the Spanish label iTinerant, four monographic compact discs with works by the Mexican composers Carlos Jiménez Mabarak, to celebrate his 100th year of birth, Víctor Rasgado, Jesús Villaseñor and his own. The same label recently published also his monographic CD “Trigos” including his Clarinet Concerto, Concerto for Four Guitars and Orchestra and Danza Concertante for piccolo and orchestra. He has been the artistic director and principal conductor of the Academia Cervantina, ensemble created by the Festival International Cervantino (Mexico) to promote the training of high-level performers specialized in XX century and contemporary music. As principal conductor of the Eastman BroadBand Ensemble (USA) since 2007 he participated in many international tours and recorded for Bridge Records (2010) and Urtext (2012) two monographic CDs, respectively with music by Zohn-Muldoon (finalist for 2011 Pulitzer Prize) and Sánchez-Gutiérrez. As music director and principal conductor of Orquesta Sinfónica de Guanajuato (2012-2014), he recorded a triple CD with music by Mexican composers (Quindecim 2014), including his Cantata Concertante N.3 Phos Hilarón (orchestral version), a monographic CD with music by Carlos Chávez and “The Sleeping Beauty” by R.Someso.
Throughout twenty years of teaching, he organized successful workshops in which he had the opportunity to work with students of different levels of study and cultural backgrounds. In collaboration with Franco Donatoni, he organized an International Composition Course and Festival over four consecutive years (Mexico 1993-96). He was the principal teacher of composition, analysis, and orchestration at the Instituto Cardenal Miranda, and the University of Guanajuato. He also lectured and conducted composition seminars, workshops, master classes, and symposiums at several other institutions in Europe, United States, Canada, Costa Rica, and Mexico. Among the most noteworthy are University of Costa Rica, University of Cincinnati, Conservatorio F. A. Bonporti of Riva del Garda (Italy), Centro Nacional de las Artes, Eastman School of Music (Rochester, NY) Rotterdam Conservatory of Music (Netherlands), and Conservatoire de Musique de Montreal (Canada). Many of his students have earned top honors at prestigious international competitions. These include The Camargo Foundation (France), 9×9 het Asko Shoenberg Ensemble (Amsterdam, Holland), “Ad Referendum II” (Quèbec, Canada), International Composition Competition “Mozart,” Mozarteum University (Salzburg, Austria), “Reine Maria Jose” (Genève), “Concorso Internazionale di Composizione per il Festival di Chitarra” (Lago Negro, Italy), Concorso Internazionale di Composizione “Suvini Zerboni,” (Milan, Italy), and “Gaudeamus Music Week” (Amsterdam, Holland), among others.
Recently he has been invited by the Department of Composition of the Eastman School of Music of Rochester, NY to be the Howard Hanson Visiting Professor 2017 and present, in April of the same year, two programs entirely dedicated to his music, interviews, a master class and a symposium to speak about his works. The Howard Hanson Visiting Professorship is funded by Eastman’s Hanson Institute for American Music. Previous Hanson Visiting Professors include composers Jo Kondo, Hans Abra- hamsen, and Lotus Andreessen, as well as Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Mario Davidovsky.
Trigos has been member of Sistema Nacional de Creadores de Arte (SNCA) for several years, Associate Composer of the Canadian Music Centre, and actually is member of The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP).