After listening to a few songs from Encanto in English and Spanish, I realized that the melodies, words, and rhymes in the Spanish versions often seemed fit together better than in the translations of most Disney songs.

Given that it was set in a Spanish-speaking country, were the songs in Encanto written with some additional consideration for how the Spanish versions would sound? Or was it a more typical case of writing the English version first and then later the Spanish version completely independently?

  • I don't know if I can find it right now, but I caught a really nice NPR segment with interviews from Germain Franco & Charise Castro Smith ahead of the Oscars that discussed their individual backgrounds & researching Colombian music, don't recall if they answered this particular question though... Apr 5, 2022 at 22:37
  • FWIW, it’s not just the Spanish translations. Some of the songs actually sound really good in other languages too (for example, the German version of ‘We don't talk about Bruno.' actually sounds pretty amazing, especially the whispered parts), though I doubt that that is as intentional as the Spanish versions sounding good. Apr 6, 2022 at 11:33

1 Answer 1


A lot of thought went into the music of the movie according to this NPR interview with composer Germaine Franco.

According to the article, when Lin Manuel Miranda began writing the music he:

“…wanted an all-Latinx musical team for Encanto, and called Franco personally to ask if she'd score the film.”

“Franco took pains throughout to steep the music, including her orchestral arrangements of Miranda's songs, in traditional Colombian instrumentation, and make room for the Colombian musicians on her team to contribute ideas and instinct into their performances.”

According to this classicfm interview with Lin Manuel Miranda he did something different to add to the authenticity of the music.

“The film marked a first for Miranda, whose fan-favourite song, ‘Dos Oruguitas’, was his first song written entirely in Spanish.”

“Miranda, who is of Puerto Rican descent, thought it important to write the acoustic song first in Spanish, before translating it to English, in order to make it sound like an authentic Colombian folk song.”

So at least one song was written in Spanish first.

  • 1
    Isn't 'Dos Oruguitas' sung in Spanish in the (english-language version of the) movie
    – mcalex
    Apr 7, 2022 at 7:38

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