Elena Romero Collection

(Madrid, 1907 – Madrid, 1996)

Date added: 2012

Contains: The collection is made up of 91 scores for voice and piano, instrumental chamber music, theatre music and symphonic music. The scores are both handwritten, with some in her own hand, and printed.

Elena Romero

Description of the archive

Identification details

Reference code: ES.28006.BFJM/

Title/Name: The Elena Romero Collection

Dates: 1940-1993

Citation format: Elena Romero Collection (Library of the Juan March Foundation. Madrid)

Description level: Contents


Archival history: Elena Romero kept all of her musical documentation in her possession during her life. After her death it passed to her children and heirs. Her children, Agustín Guillermo and Enrique Fernández Romero, donated the musical archive to the Foundation's Library of Spanish contemporary Music and Theatre in March 2012.

Institutional history/biographical sketch: Born in Madrid, Elena Romero started her musical studies at a young age with her mother. She later studied composition in the Madrid Royal Conservatory, with Joaquín Turina and Julio Gómez, and began studying orchestral conducting with Ataúlfo Argenta (Elena Romero was the first woman to conduct a symphony orchestra in Spain). In Barcelona she continued her piano studies with Frank Marshall (whose academy was one of the city's main cultural centres) and her composition studies with Ricardo Lamote de Grignon. The professional and personal relationship she developed with Salvador Bacarisse when they were students together in Barcelona continued in Paris after he had been exiled.

As a concert pianist her abilities had been recognised since she was a young girl and she played an important role in the dissemination of the works of the leading composers of the "Generation of '27". Her performances were heard as part of a number of Spanish and international tours, as well as on the radio (where Elena Romero was a point of reference in discovering "las nuevas músicas", the new music). Her composing may be divided into diverse periods that followed the style of the times: in one period her work was inspired by the impressionism of Debussy, in another it was closer to neoclassical style and in yet another it was inspired by polytonal and non-rigid twelve tone techniques.

Her catalogue is made up of 65 pieces, covering all the usual genres: choir pieces, for voice and piano, chamber music, symphonic music, etc.

Notable amongst the prizes she received during her career were the Pedrell prize for her ballet Títeres composed in 1950 and the BBC prize (1976) for Ensayo para una orquesta sobre dos canciones surafricanas.

Manner of acquisition: DONATION

Content and Structure

Scope and Content: The musical documents in this archive can be divided into the following sections: handwritten scores by her and others, printed scores.

Evaluation, selection, removal: Given their historical interest, all the documents are to be preserved permanently, in accordance with Law 16/1985 of 25 June on Spanish Historical Heritage.

Organisation: Classification table

Conditions Governing Access and Use

Conditions governing access: The documents are open to all.

Conditions governing reproduction: Reproduction is permitted for research, study and performance purposes only.

Language/script(s) of the documents: The predominant language is Spanish.

Physical characteristics and technical requirements: Most of the documents are in good condition.

Associated Documents

Other related institutions: Sociedad General de Autores y Editores (Society of Authors and Publishers), Madrid Royal Conservatory.

Notes and Control

Notes: The collection is digitized

Other resources in the Foundation