Josep Cercós
(Barcelona, 1925- Barcelona, 1989)

His father and the maternal grandfather were clarinetists and introduced him to music. At the age of seven he began to study piano and at seventeen he made the first concert. He studied harmony with Ricard Lamote de Grignon and Ernest Cervera and counterpoint with Cristòfor Taltabull, while he followed the courses in Philosophy and Letters. He attended the courses that Hermann Scherchen did in his house, where he contacted Luigi Nono, Iannis Xenakis and other composers of the time. After a brief stay in Paris and Geneva, he settled in Barcelona. He was a member of the "Círculo Manuel de Falla".

He worked for many years at the Espasa-Calpe publishing house in the writing of biographies and music summaries, some of them a whole treatise. He accompanied many ballet classes on the piano: one of Juan Tena's recitals, most of those by Marina Noreg, and practically all of his wife, the dancer, ballet teacher and choreographer Carmen Calvet.

His musical language as a composer, has its own characteristics: a great respect for tradition and a very personal conception of modernity coexist. The sources of his style are found in German Romanticism and in composers like Scriabin. Early on, he felt the need to find his own compositional technique and this led him to investigate. Its first period stands out for a romanticism of singular sound and the use of a harmony not yet systematized. In the late 1950s, he contacted with the European avant-garde and began to base his theoretical principles and applied serialism. In the 1980s, he made a synthesis of the two previous periods: he returned to a romanticism that was based on an already developed theoretical system.

His catalog includes various orchestral works, chamber music, pieces for piano, for harpsichord, for organ, songs and music for theatre and literary cabaret.


Josep Cercós Archive in the Biblioteca de Catalunya

Sheet music on Clivis

Sheet music on Editorial Trió


Preludis ambulants (selection) for piano

I.Nit de reis

II. L’esmolet