pianist and pedagogue
(1924 – 2013)
María Rosa Oubiña de Castro was a renowned Argentine pianist and pedagogue (1924 – 2013).
She began her musical studies in Santiago del Estero, with professors María B. Cinquegrani and Elida Ágata Basabe de Maturano (disciple of Scaramuzza). In Buenos Aires she was trained under the guidance of the eminent Maestro Vicente Scaramuzza and became one of the most authoritative transmitters of his invaluable teachings. She completed her studies at the “Carlos López Buchardo” National Conservatory.
Several years in Europe allowed MRO to investigate and expand her knowledge. She attended the classes of Maestros Abbey Simon in London and Switzerland, Nikita Magaloff and Madelaine Lipatti in Geneva, and those of Hans Graf in Vienna, where she got a scholarship from the State Academy.
Upon her return to her country she was engaged by the “Instituto Superior de Música” at the “Universidad Nacional del Litoral”, in Santa Fe, to occupy the advanced piano chair for six years. She taught with authority, in different conservatories: National “López Buchardo”, Municipal “Manuel de Falla”, “Juan José Castro” and “Gilardo Gilardi”, dependent the latter two, on the “Dirección de Enseñanza Artística” of the Province of Buenos Aires.
In her youth she played extensively the repertoire for solo piano, with orchestra and piano duo (with her husband for ten years, Roberto Castro). Reviewing her large curriculum vitae we find performances throughout the national territory, as well as in halls of Switzerland, Austria and Spain presenting large-scale works (concerto # 2 by Rachmaninoff, partita # 1 by Bach, sonata # 2 by Schumann, preludes, scherzi and studies by Chopin, sonata “Waldstein” and triple concerto by Beethoven, “Sarcasms”, “Diabolic Suggestion”, “Toccata” and concerto # 3 by Prokofiev, Hungarian Rhapsody # 11 by Liszt, without forgetting the Argentine compositions: “Tangos” and “Toccata” by Juan José Castro, “Malambo” by Ginastera, “Allegro Rústico” by Gianneo, etc.).
She has taught numerous courses on technique, interpretation and piano teaching, both in Buenos Aires and inland, under the auspices of “Fondo Nacional de las Artes” and other public and private entities. Since 1974 she was often invited to teach courses in many cities of Europe (Geneva, Rome, Naples, Strasbourg, Brussels, Paris, Madrid, Barcelona).
She created and directed the “Escuela de Altos Estudios Pianísticos”, for an integral formation of the pianist. In 1976 she founded the “Centro de Estudios Pianísticos” – CEP, whose presidency she has exercised until her death.
She founded the “Martha Argerich International Piano Competition” as a tribute to the great Argentine pianist, organizing two editions (1999 and 2003).
Author of the books in her field: “Enseñanzas de un gran maestro: Vicente Scaramuzza” and “Elementos de técnica pianística – Análisis y pedagogía” (also published in French), and a DVD based on her second book and that under the same name was published by the CEP in 2006.
Alongside her work as a performer and teacher, she carried out tasks as critic, musical commentator and producer of programs of concerts on radio and television. With conviction she shared her passion for art with the audience. In “Radio Municipal de Buenos Aires” she was in charge of the following auditions: “Cursillo de técnica pianística”, “El piano en los nuevos discos”, “El piano y sus intérpretes”, “Músicos contemporáneos”, “Conciertos de la mañana”, “Conciertos de la tarde”, “Qué opina la crítica”, “Reportajes a personalidades del mundo musical”, “Los románticos” and “Boletín musical para el pianista”. In Radio Mitre she presented “Nuestra música” and in Radio Excelsior, “Música… por músicos”. On the state TV channel she served as host of the programs: “Las noches”, “Reportaje a la música”, “Nuevos valores”, “Diálogos con la orquesta”, “Combinaciones instrumentales” and “Conciertos de jazz”.
María Rosa Oubiña de Castro (alias “Cucucha”) was a key figure of the music scene in Buenos Aires, with her tireless work heading the CEP.
In 2003 and 2005 she received awards from “Sociedad Argentina de Educación Musical” and “Asociación de Críticos Musicales de la Argentina”.