'In my work, I am proud to say, one can detect the enormous debt I owe to composers from Monteverdi to Alban Berg. But perhaps the greatest of my debts is having learnt that the originality of an opera need not involve the rejection of our tradition (which would be like blindly embracing the condition of an orphan), but rather the profound assimilation of it, so as to achieve the closest union between a text and its music.' - Daniel Catán
When San Diego Opera produced Catán's opera La Hija de Rappaccini ('Rappaccini's Daughter') in 1994, it was the first opera by a Mexican composer to be produced in the USA. Florencia en el Amazonas (1996) was the first opera in Spanish to be commissioned by a US opera company.
When he died suddenly on 9 April 2011 in Austin, Texas, USA, aged 62, Catán was working on a further opera, Meet John Doe, which had been planned for performance in 2012.
Profile. Power and Agility - Ron Bierman talks to Cuban-American soprano Elaine Alvarez
Ensemble. Unmistakably American - William Bolcom's 'A View from the Bridge', heard by Giuseppe Pennisi
Ensemble. A Magnificent Piece - Daniel Catán's 'Il Postino' impresses Maria Nockin
Profile. Finding the Right Voice - Maria Nockin talks to American composer Daniel Catán