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Odilio Luis Urfé González (Madruga, 1921-La Habana, 1988)

Musicologist, academic musician, pianist, professor and orchestra conductor.

Member of an outstanding family of Cuban musicians. Son of José Urfé, who initiated him in musical studies; first in the Madruga Music Band, later in the dancing orchestra he hold for years. Besides, he studied with his mother, Leonor González and with professor María Josefa Pardinas who taught him piano, and later in Havana Municipal Conservatory (1938-1947), He widened his knowledges of piano, flute, clarinet, violin, double bass, percussion and composition with professor Luisa María Chartrand.

During all those years he worked as pianist in diverse groups. In 1931 he settled and conducted the Orquesta Ideal; from1942 to 1950, he is flutist of Cheo Belén Puig orchestra and pianist of the Orquesta de Cámara del Conservatorio Municipal de Música de La Habana (Chamber Orchestra of Havana Municipal Conservatory of Music).

Stimulated by Leopold Stokowski and others, he founded the Instituto de Investigaciones Folklóricas (Institute of Folkloric Researches) (later Seminario de Música Popular /Seminary of Popular Music/ and after his death, Centro de Información y Documentación Musical /Centre of Music Information and Documentation/), settled in the former Church of Paula, with the cooperation of other reputed personalities of Cuban Culture from those years. From there he projected as one of the most consacrated studious promoters of the Cuban musical culture, basically popular and folkloric trends. His numerous researches were printed in Cuban and foreign publishings, and were also made public by his outstanding labour as teacher and lecturer, the latter not only in Cuba, but also, in countries of Europe, North and Central America.

Founder-conductor of the Charanga Nacional de Conciertos, he delivered numerous courses and lectures in Cuba and abroad. He published different articles on Cuban music in magazines and newspapers.

He made an excelent research labour and had a wide endorsement as Culture Worker He left a good amount of works on different music topics

Essays and articles such as Del folklore y la música popular cubana, Música folklórica y ritmos caribeños, Aporte negro a la música cubana, Folklore criollo, Factores que integran la música cubana, La rumba and Síntesis histórica del danzón, integrate his vast and scattered musicological bibliography.

In 1983 he produced a report on the final version of the National Anthem of Cuba to the National Assembly of the People´s Power. His work was approved and immediately printed and recorded for public knowledge.