Jose Mauricio Nunes Garcia was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, the grandson of slaves. He lost his father at an early age and was raised by his mother and aunt who saw his musical talent and found him a teacher. Jose Mauricio had a beautiful voice and could memorize many melodies. He played harpsichord and guitar and by the age of 12 was teaching music to others. He studied to become a priest while composing music for church services. When Prince John VI came to Brazil from Portugal to avoid war in Europe, Garcia became a musician in the royal court. He wrote music during the time of Mozart, Beethoven and Haydn and was influenced by their style. He conducted the first performance of Mozart’s Requiem in Brazil. He wrote a Requiem himself as well as many sacred works, an opera and a symphony. In 1973, Brazil recognized Garcia’s many contributions to music in Brazil by putting him on a stamp.