Rodrigo’s Concierto de Aranjuez has become extremely popular and is in fact one of the most popular classical compositions of all time. Written in 1939, this three-movement work secured Rodrigo;s position as the leading Spanish composer of the day.
The courtly Fantasia para un gentilhombre (Fantasia for a Gentleman) is a brilliant example of Rodrigo’s exploration of Spanish music of the seventeenth century: this charming suite is based on dance pieces by the Spanish guitarist and composer Gaspar Sanz (1640-1710), author of an important treatise on the guitar.
According to Pepe Romero, the soloist who premiered the work in 1983, Concierto oara una fiesta (1981) ’set a new standard of technique for the guitar’. It is a brilliant showpiece for the guitar, full of fiendishly difficult writing, and a work guaranteed to bring the house down.