Sofía Martínez

Vitoria-Gasteiz, 1965

Born in Vitoria in 1965, Sofía Martínez studied in her native city under the guidance of the legendary musician Carmelo Bernaola who at that time agreed to take charge of the music conservatory in Vitoria and shaped a whole era which today, alas, would be inconceivable were it not for the memories of those who were first inspired there and now parade their maturity on the Spanish music scene.

After this initial stage in Vitoria (which was no doubt fundamental, but in need of other international experiences to establish an extensive and successful compositional career), Sofía Martínez travelled to Paris where she furthered her studies with leading personalities such as Emmanuel Nunes and Marc-André Dalbavie, taught and became acquainted with a highly competitive musical life.

If the Parisian periplus had been intense and extensive (around a decade, the 1990s, which Sofia spent intermittently in Paris), she would soon feel the call of Italy; there she lived through the end of the twentieth century, with a residency in 2000 at the Academy of Spain as a scholarship holder. A couple of years later, Sofia worked for a season in Venice, after which she spent a further period of time between Paris and Madrid, and finally (and for now) the composer lives and works in her natal city of Vitoria.

Sofía Martínez writes meticulous and often secretive music in its most intimate form which, paradoxically, is highly accessible to audiences.

Much of the rigorous discipline of a structuralist like Nunes underlies her music, yet it is entwined with colours that seem to allude to her knowledge of French spectral music. However, her music has remarkable personality. As the French composer and musicologist Jean-Marc Chouvel remarks, Sofia: combines her vocation as a composer with an eminently delicate and personal listening experience that she draws from the world. And it is this listening experience that she transmits to us; a listening experience that remains miraculously in awe.