Xavier Beteta, composer/piano

Born in Guatemala City, Xavier studied piano at the National Conservatory of Guatemala with Consuelo Medinilla. At age 18, he was awarded the first prize at the Augusto Ardenois National Piano Competition and third prize at the Rafael Alvarez Ovalle Composition Competition in Guatemala. He continued his piano studies in the United States with Argentinean pianist Sylvia Kersenbaum and with Ukrainian pianist Sergei Polusmiak. He also attended masterclasses with pianists Massimiliano Damerini and Daniel Rivera in Italy. Xavier has performed in different venues in the United States, Europe and Latin America and has been a soloist with the Guatemalan National Symphony Orchestra, the Orchestra Augusto Ardenois, and the Camellia Symphony in Sacramento.

As a composer, Xavier did most of his studies privately with Rodrigo Asturias. In 2013 he won the Second Place at the fourth International Antonin Dvorak Composition Competition in Prague. Xavier studied music theory at the University of Cincinnati — College Conservatory of Music where his thesis about the music of Rodrigo Asturias was ranked no. 4 in the National Best-Seller Dissertation List. He obtained his Ph.D. in composition at the University of California San Diego with Pulitzer-Prize winning composer, Roger Reynolds. At UCSD he also studied with Philippe Manoury and Chinary Ung. His compositions have been performed in diverse festivals such as Festival Musica in Strasbourg, France, Darmstadt Composition Summer Courses in Germany, June in Buffalo, SICPP in Boston, Opera Theater Festival of Lucca, Italy and by ensembles such as Accroche Note, Ensemble Signal, and UCSD Palimpsest. He is currently an Assistant Professor of Music Theory and Composition at Wheaton College.

Listen to Beteta’s “La Catedral Abandonada” here.