German Cáceres

(b. 9 July 1954, San Salvador).

Salvadoran composer of mostly orchestral, chamber, vocal, and piano works that have been performed throughout the Americas and in Europe; he is also active as a conductor.

Mr. Cáceres studied counterpoint, harmony and musical forms privately with Esteban Servellón from 1969–71 and Ion Cubicec from 1971–73. He studied chamber music and oboe with Ronald Roseman and composition with David Diamond and Stanley Wolfe at the Juilliard School in New York, New York from 1973–78, where he earned both his BMus and MMus. He also studied composition privately with Julián Orbón and conducting privately with José Serebrier, both in New York, New York, as well as conducting privately with Ricardo del Carmen in 1978–79 and Alejandro Muñoz Ciudad Real in 1979–80. He later studied composition with Jonathan D. Kramer at the University of Cincinnati – College-Conservatory of Music from 1987–89 and there earned his DMA.

Among his honours are the Guggenheim Fellowship (1981), the Premio Nacional de Cultura in El Salvador (1982), the Internationaler Gertrud-Ramdohr-Preis in Hamburg (1986), the Fulbright Foundation Fellowship (1987–89), and the Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship (1991). He later received the Premio XX Siglo at the Tribuna de la Música Latinoamericana in Argentina (1997, for Fantasía sobre una Cadencia de Gesualdo) and the title Músico del Año from the Unión de Artistas y Escritores Salvadoreños (1999). In addition, he served as honorary president of the festival for strings in Gosau, Austria (1987) and represented El Salvador at the Foro Interamericano de Directores de Orquesta in Caracas (1988). He was named a Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the government of France (1992), a Compositor y Director de Orquesta Distinguido de El Salvador by the congress of El Salvador (1999) and an artist of the Ordem de Rio Branco by the government of Brazil (1999). He is a member of the Ateneo de El Salvador, the Centro Cultural Salvadoreño, the Colegio de Compositores Latinoamericanos de Música de Arte in Mexico, the Fundación Julia Díaz, the Instituto Bolivariano, the Instituto Masferreriano, and the Instituto Sanmartiniano. His music has been performed in Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Costa Rica, Cuba, the Czech Republic, El Salvador, France, Germany, Guatemala, Honduras, Israel, Italy, Mexico, the Netherlands, Romania, Spain, Uruguay, the USA, and Venezuela. A portrait concert was given at California State University, Northridge in Los Angeles in 2001.

As a conductor, he served as conductor of the Orquesta de Cámara de El Salvador from 1979–83. He later served as music director and principal conductor of the Orquesta Sinfónica de El Salvador from 1985–99 and has again served as its music director and principal conductor since 2002. He has conducted ensembles and orchestras in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, Uruguay, the USA, and Venezuela.

He is also active in other positions. He founded the Festival de Música Contemporánea de El Salvador in 1996 and has served as its music director since 1996. He served as director of the programme Música del nuestro tiempo on Radio Clásica in El Salvador from 1997–99. He has written numerous articles about music in Latin America and other topics.

He taught music history at the Universidad Centroamericana José Simeón Cañas in San Salvador from 1993–2002 and served as Director del Arte y Cultura at the Universidad de El Salvador from 2000–02. He lectured at both California State University, Northridge and the University of Southern California in Los Angeles in 2001.


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Bálsamo (ballet, scenario by Dario Dossier), orchestra, 1978

El Cristo Negro (opera in 3 acts, libretto by Hugo Lindo), 1998


Yulcuicat, 1973

Concierto, harp, orchestra, 1977

Concierto para Cuerdas, string orchestra, 1979

Concierto, piano, orchestra, 1981

Sinfonía, 1983

Concierto, small orchestra (12 winds, 11 brass), 1988

Diferencias, 1988

Concierto, violin, orchestra, 1989

Deploración (in memoriam Julián Orbón), 1993

Fanfarria a San Salvador, 12 brass, 1996

Tiento I, small orchestra, 1996

Concierto No. 1, guitar, orchestra, 2000

Tiento VII, string orchestra, 2000

Concierto No. 2, guitar, string orchestra, 2001

Concierto No. 3, guitar, orchestra, 2001

Doble Concierto, violin, cello, orchestra, 2001

Lacónicas II, 2002

Fantasía sobre una Cadencia de Vivaldi, string orchestra, 2005

Concierto, cello, orchestra, 2007


Cuarteto para cuerdas No. 1, string quartet, 1974

Cuarteto para cuerdas No. 2, string quartet, 1976

Concierto de Cámara No. 1, flute, oboe, clarinet, French horn, bassoon, piano, 1979

Sonata No. 1, violin, piano, 1980

Concierto, viola, ensemble (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, 2 violins, viola, cello, double bass), 1980

Sonatina, guitar, 1981

Sonata, viola, piano, 1982

Sonata, oboe, cello, piano, 1983

Tres Piezas, bass clarinet, harp, vibraphone, 1987

Cinco Deploraciones, flute, 1988

Cuatro Piezas, flute, bassoon, 1988

Sonata No. 2, violin, piano, 1988

Concierto de Cámara No. 2, flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, 2 violins, viola, cello, double bass, piano, 1990

Trío, violin, cello, piano, 1991

Partitas, flute, oboe, clarinet, violin, cello, harpsichord, 1992

Cuatro Piezas, violin, 1993

Concierto de Cámara No. 3, 2 violins, cello, harpsichord, 1994

Fantasía sobre una Cadencia de Gesualdo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 2 French horns, 1994

Cuarteto para cuerdas No. 3, string quartet, 1996

Tiento II, clarinet, 1997

Tiento III, cello, 1997

Ocho Variaciones sobre un Conjunto de Ocho Notas, guitar, 1997

Tiento IV, violin, 1999

Tiento V, oboe, 2000

Tiento VIII, guitar, 2001

Tiento IX, violin, cello, piano, 2003

Tiento X, flute, piano, 2003

Tres Piezas, violin, percussion, 2003

Tiento XI, clarinet, piano, 2008


Tres Cantos (text by Hugo Lindo), mixed chorus, 1981

Cantata (text by Cristóbal Humberto Ibarra), mixed chorus, orchestra, 1992

Villancico del Calendario (text by Álvaro Menéndez Leal), mixed chorus, 1996


Tres Canciones (text by Arnaldo Sepúlveda), soprano, string quartet, 1975

Estáncias (text by Francisco Gavidia), soprano, orchestra, 1979

Tres Canciones Epigramáticas (text by Ernesto Cardenal), soprano, piano, 1979

Cuatro Cantos (text by Álvaro Menéndez Leal), soprano, piano, 1981

Premisas (cantata, text by Arnaldo Sepúlveda), soprano, string quartet, 1982

Cantos de Fácil Palabra (text by Hugo Lindo), soprano, flute, harpsichord, 1985

Tres Canciones (texts by Lucius Annæus Seneca, Bernal Díaz del Castillo, Pedro Geoffroy Rivas), soprano, orchestra, 1988

Cantos (texts by Gracilazo de la Vega, Garci Sánchez de Badajoz), soprano, orchestra, 1990

Tres Canciones (text by Francisco Morales Eró), soprano, piano, 1995

El Señor de la Casa del Tiempo (text by Ricardo Lindo Fuentes), soprano, piano, 1996

Lo que dice el Caracol (text by Salarrué), soprano, orchestra, 1997

Siete Canciones (text by Mariana Sansón Argüello), soprano, piano, 1999

Cuatro Canciones (text by Rafael Rodríguez Díaz), soprano, piano, 1999

Las Monedas bajo la Lluvia (text by Ricardo Lindo Fuentes), voice, guitar, 1999

Llama y Espina (3 sonnets, text by María Cristina Orantes), soprano, piano, 2004

Cartas Interdimensionales (3 songs, text by Juana Rosa Pita), mezzo-soprano, piano, 2004

Yo tengo que decir mi palabra (text by Elisa Huezo Paredes), mezzo-soprano, piano, 2004

Elegía de Junio (text by Cristóbal Humberto Ibarra), mezzo-soprano, piano, 2005

Loa del Hombre (text by Hugo Lindo), mezzo-soprano, speaker, orchestra, 2005

Kinah (Lamentación Fúnebre Masónica), voice, orchestra, 2007


Sonata, 1984

Tres Estudios sobre el Silencio, 1989

Lacónicas I, 1993

Tiento VI, 2000

Tres Piezas, 2002

Octostylus, 2006