Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Primary sources of music for Classical Guitar and related instruments, research studies, biographies, links, etc.
amade
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:39 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by amade » Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:59 pm

This is a translation of Luis Briso de Montiano's announcement of Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'. This piece, in the key of E minor, consists of an introduction and a serenata, which is in the style of a barcarole.
(See: http://guitarra.artepulsado.com/foros/s ... .php?24170). There is not yet incontrovertible proof that this piece is indeed by Tárrega, but the attribution to Tárrega on the manuscript seems plausible for a number of reasons. One can see the facsimiles on the website and hear a mp3 of the piece performed by Jesús Saiz Heudo.

Here is my rough translation of the text of the announcement:

In March 1902 Manuela Vázquez-Barros, a 17-year-old guitarist, visited her hometown of Seville. She had spent most of her life in Argentina. She left for Europe in April 1900. After visiting Paris and Nice, she visited Malaga in October 1901, and she would go to Rome in early 1902. But the time in Italy was not too long because in February of that year he had already arrived in Seville. She was staying at the "Hotel de Madrid" in this Andalusian city, where she, her mother and one of her brothers would spend the winter. I do not know Manuela's social contacts, nor her musical or specifically guitar [activity], but all of them must have been important and varied due to their social position. 'Manolita', as she was known in those years, was the daughter of Paula Florido and Toledo, a wealthy Argentine lady, widowed at that time but who already maintained, in that year of 1902, correspondence with who would be her fourth husband, the businessman, editor, bibliophile expert and indefatigable collector José Lázaro Galdiano.

During her stay in Seville in March 1902 Manolita accessed a source that we do not know (but necessarily had to be handwritten, because there is not even the slightest trace of a source with that content) and made a copy whose cover page reads: «Serenata Española.- / Dedicada a D.n P. Aguilera / por su autor D.n Fran.co Tárrega.-» It is an oblong manuscript composed of three unbound and nested bifolios. Eight of the pages are used to copy the music and a ninth is the cover, leaving the remaining three unused.

This work, of which we had no information so far, is part of a small collection of manuscripts, barely forty pieces, which is known as the "Manuela Vázquez-Barros" collection of the Lázaro Galdiano library. For the study of these manuscripts, the Lázaro Galdiano Foundation, FSP and the More Hispano Cultural Association have recently signed a collaboration agreement that will be presented on the 7th of this month at 7:00 pm at the Lazaro Galdiano Museum in Madrid.

The new work of Tárrega will appear soon in a modern edition with a substantial critical apparatus by Jesús Saiz Huedo. (When it is accessible we will give the news here.) A catalog of the collection, expected to be published shortly, has also been made. In that catalog and referring to this Serenata Española by Tárrega I write: A highly virtuosic work for solo guitar with an 18-bar introduction that gives way to the "Serenade." It includes slides, trills, harmonics, a short passage marked "Vivo" with a final tremolo. Until now, no other source for this work is known, neither handwritten nor printed. Some authors show that a «Spanish Fantasy» is among the pieces performed by Francisco Tárrega in his concerts but attribute this name to another work very frequently performed by guitarists, known as «Gran Jota».

The dedicatee, Pedro Aguilera, was a guitarist, very likely a native of Almería, who was born around the 1860s because in 1881 he was mentioned, after one of his performances, as the "young guitarist Mr. Pedro Aguilera Morales "(1). He was a disciple of Juan Robles Yáñez (2) who, in turn, had been a disciple of Julián Arcas (3). Aguilera performed with his teacher, at least, between November 1882 and October 1884, mainly in Almerian theaters such as the Café Suizo and the Principal and Calderón theaters (4). In July 1885, he performed at the Círculo Mercantil de Sevilla, in a three-part concert without the participation of other musicians (5). Throughout his artistic career, although his repertory included some pieces of popular or Andalusian character, it will be mainly composed by works by authors such as Julián Arcas (Fantasy on motifs of La Traviata, Fantasy on heterogeneous motifs, Fantasy on opera motifs) El Pirata '), José Brocá (German Fantasy), Louis Moreau Gottschalk (Studies and Trémolo) and even Fernando Sor (Andante and Polka) or transcriptions of works by Bach or Beethoven (6). Aguilera performed in various Andalusian locations at least until the mid-1890s (7), dates in which he was already residing in Seville as an employee of the Ibarra shipping company, a position he held until his death that took place in that city, "As a result of rapid illness" on May 4, 1910 (8). His obituaries, which mention him as "favorite disciple" of Francisco Tárrega, indicate that he left three children (Adolfo, Federico and Julio). Below is a fragment (start of the Introduction and beginning of the Serenade).

Notes
(1) La Crónica Meridional, diario almeriense, 2 de marzo de 1881.
(2) La Crónica Meridional, 16 de noviembre de 1882.
(3) SEVILLANO MIRALLES, Antonio: Almería por tarantas. Cafés cantantes y artistas de la tierra. Almería: Instituto de Estudios Almerienses, 1996, p. 102.
(4) La Crónica Meridional, días 16, 17 y 19 de noviembre de 1882; 9 y 22 de febrero de 1883; 13 de agosto y 17 y 23 de octubre de 1884.
(5) La Crónica Meridional, 28 de julio de 1885.
(6) La Crónica Meridional, 28 de julio de 1885 y 28 de julio de 1888; El Radical, diario republicano, 16 de octubre de 1907.
(7) La Crónica Meridional, 29 de septiembre de 1899.
(8) El Liberal, 5 y 8 de mayo de 1910; La Crónica Meridional, 7 de mayo de 1910.
Last edited by amade on Fri Mar 23, 2018 3:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.
DJB

1966 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez (SP/Mahogany)
1970 Jose Ramirez 1a (CD/BR)
1979 R. E. Bruné Baroque lute
1980 R. E. Bruné Renaissance lute

User avatar
prawnheed
Posts: 577
Joined: Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:07 pm

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by prawnheed » Thu Mar 22, 2018 5:38 pm

Intersting. Thanks.

User avatar
pogmoor
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 9252
Joined: Mon Nov 22, 2004 10:55 am
Location: Oxfordshire, UK

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by pogmoor » Thu Mar 22, 2018 5:41 pm

There is some discussion of the piece herehttps://www.classicalguitardelcamp.com/viewtopi ... 1&t=118858 on a thread entitled Tárrega's 'Fantasía Española.
Eric from GuitarLoot
Renaissance and Baroque freak; classical guitars by Lester Backshall (2008), Ramirez (Guitarra del Tiempo 2017),
Yamaha (SLG 130NW silent classical guitar 2014).

User avatar
Stephen Kenyon
Teacher
Posts: 2530
Joined: Sun Aug 04, 2013 11:26 am
Location: Dorchester, Dorset, England

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by Stephen Kenyon » Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:57 pm

amade wrote:
Thu Mar 22, 2018 3:59 pm
...One can see the facsimiles on the website and hear a mp3 of the entire piece performed by Jesús Saiz Heudo.
Is mp3 the whole piece do we think? Seems to end a bit abruptly and overall be rather - small...
Simon Ambridge Series 40 (2005)
Trevor Semple Series 88 (1992)
Louis Panormo (1838)
Alexander Batov Baroque Guitar (2013)
Simon Ambridge 'Hauser' (2018)

amade
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:39 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by amade » Thu Mar 22, 2018 9:44 pm

I assumed it was complete, but your observation is a good one. Luis Briso de Montiano describes the piece as "A highly virtuosic work for solo guitar with an 18-bar introduction that gives way to the "Serenade." It includes slides, trills, harmonics, a short passage marked "Vivo" with a final tremolo." I don't hear any short Vivo (lively) passage nor a final tremolo. And the recorded segment could not be described as a "highly virtuosic work."
DJB

1966 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez (SP/Mahogany)
1970 Jose Ramirez 1a (CD/BR)
1979 R. E. Bruné Baroque lute
1980 R. E. Bruné Renaissance lute

Chris Delisa
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:56 am
Location: Denver, Colorado

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by Chris Delisa » Fri Mar 23, 2018 4:39 pm

That recording is just a sample. Apparently the manuscript is 8 pages long or so. So it could be a longer work. Maybe Capricho Arabe length.

It's interesting the cadence that the sample ends on. The phrases seem to be longer than much of Tarrega's work.

amade
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:39 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by amade » Fri Mar 23, 2018 8:15 pm

For more information on the collection and on Manuela Vázquez-Barros, see the website of the Biblioteca Lázaro Galdiano:

https://bibliotecalazarogaldiano.wordpr ... -galdiano/
DJB

1966 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez (SP/Mahogany)
1970 Jose Ramirez 1a (CD/BR)
1979 R. E. Bruné Baroque lute
1980 R. E. Bruné Renaissance lute

amade
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:39 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by amade » Fri Mar 23, 2018 8:40 pm

The facsimiles show paper that is mechanically ruled with 10 staves. The top staves are empty, and I would suspect that bottom staves are also empty. The facsimiles also show that there is a blank stave between each stave with inscribed music. So there is probably four staves (or perhaps five) of inscribed music on each page. The facsimiles show 5-6 bars per stave. So each page would contain 20-30 bars of music. The mp3 sample contains approximately 54 bars. If there are eight pages the piece is probably around 160 bars, since the first and last pages of manuscripts may not have a full page of music. So it must be a longer work.
Last edited by amade on Fri Mar 23, 2018 11:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
DJB

1966 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez (SP/Mahogany)
1970 Jose Ramirez 1a (CD/BR)
1979 R. E. Bruné Baroque lute
1980 R. E. Bruné Renaissance lute

Chris Delisa
Posts: 46
Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:56 am
Location: Denver, Colorado

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by Chris Delisa » Fri Mar 23, 2018 9:36 pm

Nice math! It's certainly not a miniature like Adelita or Marietta. I can't wait for the publication!

User avatar
Finn Wandahl
Posts: 149
Joined: Mon Sep 28, 2015 1:16 pm
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by Finn Wandahl » Sat Mar 24, 2018 12:27 pm

A closer examination of the handwriting of this manuscript could perhaps confirm if this is Tarragas own handwriting. However, even if it is his handwriting, this material might still have been copied from some other source. Copying by hand was often the only way these guys could share their materials.
Finn Wandahl - Copenhagen

User avatar
drdbthompson
Posts: 12
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:05 pm
Location: Carson City, NV

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by drdbthompson » Sat Mar 24, 2018 2:39 pm

Stephen Kenyon wrote:
Thu Mar 22, 2018 7:57 pm
Is mp3 the whole piece do we think? Seems to end a bit abruptly and overall be rather - small...
Good morning. After reading the translated text and visiting the website (I can read some of the Spanish) I finally found the link to the MP3. I agree, the end sounds abrupt. So, like the others here, I'm wondering how the other parts of the piece sound.

Did I hear some added reverb in the recording?

Best...

amade
Posts: 58
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 8:39 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by amade » Sun Mar 25, 2018 1:19 am

The title page clearly states the piece is by Tárrega. This copy is not in Tárrega's handwriting. Luis Briso de Montiano seems to state that the manuscript is in the handwriting of Manuela Vázquez-Barros herself. By the look of the two facsimiles, the handwriting appears to be that of a professional copyist (notice the uniformity of the notation, the very clean lines, etc.). He writes that she was 17 at the time. I suppose it is possible that this is her handwriting. It would help to see the entire manuscript. Perhaps she signed it and added an "m.p." (manu propria). In any case identification of handwriting requires a close analysis by an expert and explanation of the basis for the identification. We will have to wait until the edition appears for greater clarity.
DJB

1966 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez (SP/Mahogany)
1970 Jose Ramirez 1a (CD/BR)
1979 R. E. Bruné Baroque lute
1980 R. E. Bruné Renaissance lute

Tom
Posts: 1394
Joined: Fri Sep 11, 2009 11:40 am

Re: Tárrega's newly-discovered 'Serenata Española'

Post by Tom » Sun Mar 25, 2018 1:56 am

This is unbelievable, a remarkable piece of music.

Return to “Research and primary sources”