L. A. Guitar Quartet, Andres Segovia on next Fretworks

If you enjoy music for the classical guitar, join us Saturday evening at 7pm for Fretworks.  This week we’re featuring John Williams, the Los Angeles Guitar Quartet, Pepe Romero, and the great Andres Segovia.

The Los Angeles Guitar Quartet was founded in L. A. in 1980 with the help of Pepe Romero.  They are known for innovative music-making in a number of styles, including Baroque, Bluegrass, Flamenco, Rock, and New Age (for lack of a better term), all played on nylon string guitars.  We’ll have a Suite from Georges Bizet’s Carmen arranged for four guitars.

Here they are having some fun with Pachelbel in their “Loose” Canon:

Guitarist Pepe Romero is part of Los Romeros, featured last week, but he has made records on his own as well.  He’ll be the soloist for Fantasia para un gentilhombre (Fantasy for a Gentleman) by Joaquin Rodrigo.  Written in 1954 for Andres Segovia, it is based on themes of the 17th Century Spanish guitarist Gaspar Sanz.

Here he is playing a beautiful version of  Fransisco Tarrega’s most famous piece:

Andres Segovia is the guitarist credited more than anyone else for making the classical guitar a “serious” concert instrument and elevating the status of its repertoire.  Indeed, a number of fine composers wrote works specifically for him, including Rodrigo.  Born in Spain in 1893, he lived a long and very productive life and continued to perform into his 90′s.  He died in Madrid in 1994. Like Pablo Casals, who made the Bach Solo Cello Suites into admired concert works, Segovia made it respectable to play Bach on the guitar by making fine transcriptions and performing them with remarkable skill.  He inspired generations of guitarists.

We’ll have several of his arrangements of Bach.  Here’s a sample:

 

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