Diazmuñoz is synonymous of quality, precision, certitude, innovation, audacity. Qualities that now in 2005, are reassured while celebrating his 30 th Anniversary as conductor celebrating this milestone in the countries where he has had a strong relationship: The United States of America, Spain, Argentina, Colombia, Uruguay, Venezuela and of course, his native Mexico. During these three decades he has been throughout many more countries where he has achieved recognition as conductor, composer, pianist, percussionist, solid educator, promoter and organizer as well as a gifted lecturer. There is no doubt in assuring that maestro Diazmuñoz is one of the most complete Mexican musicians.
He started his professional music education at the National Conservatory in Mexico where he studied piano, cello, percussion and conducting. As Associate Conductor of the then newly founded Mexico City Philharmonic (1978-1979), he assisted in preparation for concerts conducted by the late Maestri Leonard Bemstein and Eduardo Mata. After this experience, Bernstein invited him to attend Tanglewood (1979). Later on (1980-1982), he went to Paris with Léon Barzin of whom he became assistant. Aside from having collaborated with these three maestros in various performances, he also has collaborated with outstanding musicians such as Gary Graffman, Jerry Hadley, Daniel Hope, Jorge Federico Osorio, János Starker, Henryk Szeryng, Susan Starr, Eva María Zuk and Zvi Zeitlin among many others.
He came to public attention since his debut at the Palacio de Bellas Artes ( Fine Arts Palace ) of his native Mexico City at 22 years of age. Ever since, he has received numerous awards and prizes, among them, the coveted prize awarded by the Mexican Union of Theater and Music Chronicles which he has received four times. (1978, 1987, 1997 and 2002). Recently, he received a Testimonial Award granted by the International Biographical Centre based in Cambridge , England as International Musician of the Year 2003.
His conducting career is notable. He has conducted more than 80 orchestras, 15 of them as Resident Conductor in 5 countries. Aside of his guest conducting appearances his career has taken him from Assistant Conductor to General Music Director, ranging in places from Miami to Madrid, from Paris to Buenos Aires, from Chile to New York, having interpreted an extremely varied, extensive and rapidly expanding musical repertoire. He has conducted over 50 World Premieres as well as numerous Local and National Premieres in 13 countries. Worthy of mention are operas by Daniel Catán ( La Hija de Rappaccíní, Mexico , San Diego and New York ), Federico Ibarra (Alicia, Mexico City), the Mexican Premiere of Bernstein's Candide as well as his own works in a dozen countries. The major Mexican Symphony Orchestras where his legacy is still present aside from the Mexico City Philharmonic mentioned above are: The National Conservatory Symphony Orchestra, The National Autonomous University Philarmonic, L'Academie Tecquepegneuse (which he founded), the State of Mexico Symphony Orchestra , the National Conservatory Philharmonic (which he founded), the Carlos Chávez Symphony and the Metropolitan Philharmonic (which he founded too).
A definitive hallmark is his outstanding and unique collection entitled Twentieth Century Mexican Symphonic Music leading the Mexico City Philharmonic Orchestra, which is a four CD package. In September 2000, while celebrating his 25th Anniversary as Conductor, Volume one was nominated for the First Latin Grammy Awards in the "Best Classical Album" category, making him the first Mexican Conductor ever to have been nominated, thus the Philharmonic became the first Mexican Orchestra to have received the same honor. He has done 28 recordings for 19 labels. Volume four will be out in the market this fall.
He is also the first Mexican conductor to have received two Golden Discs and recently a Platinum Disc for the Albums El Trí Sínfónico (Warner Music Mexico, WEA) recorded live at the National Auditorium in Mexico City (1998) conducting his own Metropolitan Philharmonic with the rock band El Tri. El Trí Sinfóníco II arrived at stores in the Fall of 2000 and went Gold at the end of that year.
His compositions have been premiered in different cities of Europe and the American Continent, some have been recorded by international stature artists such as pianist Eva María Zuk ( Mexico ) and cellist Eduardo Vassallo ( London ). Composer Daniel Catán writes: "His interest in composing makes him creative and understanding as a conductor, conversely, his ability to conduct gives him invaluable insight as composer. " He has also composed music for movies, TV and theatre.
His pedagogic passion propelled him to establish highly successful Educational Series 30 years ago conducting various orchestras. Since 1986 he has counted with the collaboration of Juan Arturo Brennan. Ever since, he has been invited by different musical institutions in France , The United States, Central America and South America and Mexico to offer courses, master classes, lectures, open rehearsals, to be juror of international competitions and so forth in different music disciplines. His commitment to share and teach is evident for his legacy at the National Autonomous University in Mexico City where he taught for five years, his full-time positions at the National Conservatory in Mexico City as well as at the New World School of the Arts in Miami , Florida . He too served as Juror for professional examinations and Concerto Competitions at the Schola Cantorum in Paris , France and the Harried Conservatory in Boca Raton , Fla. He was also General Director of the National Program for Youth Orchestras and Choirs in Mexico .
In October 2003, Pavarotti offered his last performance in Mexican soil at the Mexicali desert, and it was the Baja California Orchestra the one that was prepared by maestro Diazmuñoz for the occasion. Aside from joining in for the noted tenor's farewell, the state celebrated the Centennial of its capital, Mexicali City .
Before this historic event, in March 2001, he was appointed Music Director and Artistic Advisor of the Baja California Orchestra based in Tijuana . The first of three CDs he recorded at the helm of the orchestra in his three Seasons tenure -"Tango Mata Danzón Mata Tango"- received a Latin Grammy nomination only four months after his appointment making it the first nomination for the Baja California Orchestra. After this, he stands as the only Mexican conductor to have been nominated twice for this prestigious award.
In August 2004 he became Artistic and Music Director of the Opera Division and the New Music Ensemble of the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana after having conducted two productions as Guest Artist for the School of Music of this prestigious University. A Puccini Double-Bill in November 2003 and Sondheim's Sweeney Todd in February of this year. His first production as Music Director just took place in November with Mozart's Don Giovanni and is working now on Bernstein's Candide. With the New Music Ensemble he has offered in his first semester works by Boulez, Read-Thomas, Strawinsky, Revueltas and Aharonián among many others including some works by faculty composers.