Mexican composer Daniel Catán has died age 62

Catán was working on a new opera in Austin, Texas, a University of Texas spokeswoman said Monday. Catan was best known in the United States for his operatic adaptation of the Italian film "Il Postino," which is sung in Spanish. The Los Angeles Opera premiered "Il Postino" last year with Placido Domingo playing the poet Pablo Neruda and tenor Charles Castronovo as the wide-eyed postman Mario Ruoppolo. Born in Mexico City, he studied philosophy at the University of Sussex and music at the University of Southampton. He received a Ph.D. from Princeton University, where he studied with Milton Babbitt, James K.Randall, and Benjamin Boretz. Catán was the first Mexican composer to have an opera produced in the United States, when San Diego Opera produced his Rappaccini's Daughter in March, 1994. He has also composed orchestral and chamber works and film music. His style can be described as neo-impressionist. His music is richly lyrical, often painting evocative colours with the orchestral palette with soaring melodies atop.

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