EL RENACUAJO PASEADOR · (Pantomima para niños) [Versos de Rafael Pombo] First version

Work information Autograph Others

Instrumental genre Music for the stage / Music for small orchestra
Other versions: Second version
Place of composition
Mexico City
Date of composition
March 14, 1933
For Carmen and Natalia
Picc, cl[E♭], cl[B♭]/ 2tpt, tbn / perc / (2)vn I, (2)vn II, cb
Documentary archive
The autograph has been preserved. The archive also has a synopsis of the 1936 production.
Notes by compiler
In the manuscript, Revueltas erroneously attributes the text’s authorship to Vanegas Arroyo (the text is by Rafael Pombo).
In 1932, Germán and Lola Cueto formed a group including Graciela Amador (folklorist), Ramón Alva de la Canal (painter), Leopoldo Méndez (printmaker), Elena Huerta Múzquis and Germán List Arzubide (writers), Angelina Beloff (painter), Enrique Assad (doll carver), and Roberto Lago (puppeteer), with whom they founded a puppet theater at No. 12 Mixcalco Street. According to Roberto Lago’s book Teatro Guignol Mexicano (Mexico City: Federación Editorial Mexicana, 1987), the Fine Arts Department of the Secretariat of Education took this theater under its wing in 1933. At the time, Silvestre Revueltas was the director of the National Music Conservatory and attended the first puppet show to ever be held at the Fine Arts Palace. We can assume that the score for The Wandering Tadpole, for which Roberto Lago created an adaptation of Pombo’s text, was the result of these encounters. In 1936, Revueltas prepared a new version of this work for ballet, though there is no information about the intended company or any possible premiere. On October 5, 1940, the night of Revueltas’s death, a choreography of this ballet version was presented at the Palace of Fine Arts as part of a season of performances by the La Paloma Azul dance company founded by Anna Sokolow, who also did the choreography. Carlos Mérida designed the set and costumes. In tribute to Revueltas, a new performance of The Wandering Tadpole took place on December 13, 1940, by the same artistic team.
Texts by Revueltas about the works
As an official of the Secretariat of Public Education, Revueltas wrote the following text: “Theater for children as Graciela Amador, Leopoldo Méndez, Germán Cueto and wife, and their collaborators are attempting to do is of great educational significance. It speaks to children in their own language, of things that are familiar but at the same time new because of their presentation and purpose. Without realizing it, and in a pleasant fun way, they acquire a vigorous ideology, a sense of justice and duty, that millions of boring lessons and other boring advice would never give them.”
Periodical references
“La paloma azul.” Romance: Revista Popular Hispanoamericana 17 (October 22, 1940).
Southern Music Publishing Co.