From Nicaragua to the World

Leon remember 143 years since the birth of Jose de la Cruz Mena

Today marks 143 years since the birth of Jose de la Cruz Mena well known as "The Divine Leper" composer, musician and conductor of the Nicaraguan orchestra.

He is recognized as the classical musician who most assimilated the influence of the great Austrian masters of the waltz giving him a personal touch in the composition of musical works addressing autochthonous subjects.

José de la Cruz Mena was born in the city of León, on May 3, 1874, he was the son of Mr. Yanuario Mena and Mrs. Celedonia Ruiz. He began to study music with his father, from whom he learned how to play the cornet. He was assisted by his older brother Jesus Isidoro and later studied with the master Alejandro Cousin. In the year 1888 at 16 years he entered the Band of the Supreme Powers, of which his cousin was directing.

The waltz Ruins of musician and composer Jose de la Cruz Mena Ruiz, known as the "Divine leper", awarded in the first Florals Games of 1904 in León and performed in a piano solo by Margarita Rochi de Alonso, continues to astonish the world by Its grandeur, originality and musical creativity.

Ruins; Loves of Abraham, dedicated to his friend Abraham Morazán; Rosalía, dedicated to Rosalía de Icaza; Lola, to Lola de Alvarado; Bella Margarita, to the pianist Margarita Rochi de Alonso; Memories of Engracia, In your eyes; Emilio; Isabel, Sleep, Amores de Leonor, El Triunfo, and others that were lost. Profane songs: I think of you, Suspiros de Amor, A memento, dedicated to pianist Dona Rosario Gil de Fiallos; Dreams of love, I love you, To her, Daughters of Eve (romanza), I love you like an echo, among others.

Between the years 1895-1896 he returned to Leon, and lived on the banks of the Chiquito River, about 200 yards from the bridge, where he built a rustic hut of horcones, from which hung his hammock. Go blind.

He composes the march General Zelaya, double passage, El Libertador, and El Triunfo, and is freed from being confined and taken by train by the National Guard with other lepers to the island of the Sawyers in Corinto.

In 1907 he dies at the age of 33, on September 22, he is buried in the cemetery of Guadalupe, in Leon. After words his remains were transferred to the Cathedral of Leon.

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