• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • You already know Dokkio is an AI-powered assistant to organize & manage your digital files & messages. Very soon, Dokkio will support Outlook as well as One Drive. Check it out today!


El Salón México

Page history last edited by Louis Bergonzi 9 years, 1 month ago


El Salón México

Aaron Copland. ( El Salón México. London: Boosey & Hawkes, 1939.)




Essential Questions & Information about El Salón México


What cultural and historical facts to do we know about the song?


     This song was written by Aaron Copland in 1936. He decided to write the piece after visiting México, after visiting a particular Méxican dance hall. Copland based the piece based on several different folk songs. Some material he takes directly from the folk songs, the melodies, but he does simplify some of the tunes. He was more interested in capturing the true spirit of of the Méxican folk songs than in literal use of the original folk songs.




What is the song like when sounded by traditional instruments/voices?

     Traditionally, Méxican folk songs would be played by a band that included brass instruments like trombones or trumpets and some stringed instruments like guitar or harp as well.





How is the song taught traditionally?

     Traditionally, the song would most likely be taught aurally.




How does the song live today for the people of and from that culture?

Today, there are still folk groups that play these folk tunes such as mariachi bands, Tex-Mex groups, and the corrido genre that is still widely played. Of course, these traditions have evolved over time, but the still contain some of the same elements of folks songs that Copland drew from and that were used many years ago.




How does El Salón México mean for people who live in México today?


This piece appeals to a wide audience, which is what Aaron Copland wanted to achieve when he composed this piece. Not having interviewed anyone from México who has listened to this piece, I can't exactly be sure what this means for people who live in México. However, I can imagine that it brings to mind traditional folk genres like mariachi music.




What does El Salón México mean to people from México or people whose families are from México who live in our community today?


     As I said before, I can't know for sure what it means to these people. However, since this piece is a blending of the Western tradition of music and Méxican folk songs, I can imagine that it brings to mind Mexico, but also reminds of the blending these cultures have been doing for hundreds of years.




How we can play the song in a way that illustrates what we’ve learned about how a person can reflect and respect a song and the people who own it and think it important?


     To play this song respectfully, the performer must play the music how Copland notated it and wanted it to be played. It would also be helpful for the performers to listen to some recordings of traditional Méxican folk music along with recordings of the piece to get a good grasp of what the styles of this music are supposed to sound like. If the player is doing all of this while trying to replicate the stylistic qualities as authentically as they can, then it shows that they have knowledge about the music tradition and care about representing it well.




Print Sources



1.     El Salón México by Aaron Copland: A Study and Comparison of the Orchestral Score and Two Transcriptions for Band

D.M.A. Document
Presented in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the
Degree of Doctor of Musical Arts in the Graduate School of The Ohio State University

Erika Kirsten Svanoe, M.M. Graduate Program in Music

The Ohio State University 2009



Website Sources

Source Name Page # Quote





Audio Sources


  1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMHDpp_CUPw





Video Sources


Title Embedded address Title Embedded address










Comments (0)

You don't have permission to comment on this page.