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Joaquim Salvat was born in Barcelona in 1900, he studied at the Escola Municipal de Música de Barcelona under the teachers Tomàs Buxó (piano), Enric Morera and Joan Manén (composition). He was later appointed teacher of Sol-fa at the same school.
His work is considered to be the heir of the aesthetics postulated by Modernism and Noucentism, and is distinguished by an exquisite elegance imbuing it with an unmistakable personality, most particularly in his extensive production of songs.
He died in March 1938 and, despite his short life, his work now enables us to catch a glimpse of his great knowledge of compositional elements and the beginnings of the maturity in his creativity which could have borne great fruit.
We would like to highlight some twenty lieder from among his work with lyrics by renowned poets, including Apel·les Mestres, Joan Maragall, Josep Carner and Tomàs Garcés. However, his most interpreted work is the Quartet en Do, dedicated to the “Quartet de Corda de Barcelona” which premiered it in 1935 as the closure to the season of concerts of the Associació de Cultura Musical. There are also several works for piano, from among which we would like to highlight the Suite Lírica, a Preludi and a Sonata; for violin and piano we would emphasise the Quatro canzonette, among other smaller pieces, as well as the Cinc cançons populars harmonised for wind and string quintets. The only work he composed for orchestra, Prélude et chanson, was presented at the “Concours Kursaal d’Ostende” in 1930.
Engruna (Crumb) is a short piece for piano that is simple but nevertheless the piece is interesting for its harmonies. Genisenca and La font de l’avellana, rather than two sardanas for piano, these pieces strike one more as two scripts in piano form for later transformation into cobla arrangements.
Oriental - Petita cançó (Oriental - Short song) are two miniatures for violin and piano which radiate the Noucentista feel typical of Joaquim Salvat’s music.
The work Quatro Canzonette has four independent pieces, easy listening, with a dance air, which can be described as ballroom music, most likely made for this purpose.
The Sonata per a piano en Do menor (Sonata for Piano in C Minor) by Joaquim Serra is divided into three movements and, from an aesthetic point of view, takes few risks, yet it possesses an unquestionable brilliance and beauty.