It’s been some time since my last installment in this series, but despair not, there is more to come — beginning with a new modern masterpiece. Let me also say that I fully intend to restore a bit of regularity to this series!
Joaquin Rodrígo is arguably the greatest composer in the history of Spanish guitar music, though it was far from all he composed. His life, spanning almost the entirety of the 20th century, produced two great and enduring works. The more popular is the Concertio de Aranjuez, but it is his Fantasia para un gentilhombre, which I prefer and which I wish to introduce here. The name literally means “fantasy for a gentleman”; the gentleman in question here being the virtuoso guitarist Andrés Segovia. The piece itself draws inspiration from Spanish folk music, retaining both its lively and lyrical characteristics while making superb use of the classical orchestra. All in all, a true delight.
Watch and Listen:
(Performed by Narciso Yepes.)
(Unfortunately I couldn’t find any freely available download, so YouTube will make do! If you’re looking for a good performance to buy though, I can definitely recommend one by Pepe Romero and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields.)