Artist of the Month

Manuel Barrueco

We are excited to present Guitar Magazine's Artist of the Month for October: the legendary Manuel Barrueco.
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Manuel Barrueco’s Highlights

  • 1952: Born in Santiago de Cuba.
  • 1961: Began playing the guitar at the age of 8, attending the Esteban Salas Conservatory in Santiago de Cuba.
  • 1967: Immigrated with his family to the United States as political refugees; after a stay in Miami, they moved to Newark, New Jersey.
  • 1970: Peabody rewarded him with a full scholarship — the first-ever for a guitar student at the Conservatory, so he moved to Baltimore, Maryland, graduating in 1975.
  • 1974: Aged 22, he became the first classical guitarist to win the Concert Artists Guild competition in New York, which netted him a prized Carnegie Hall recital.
  • 1977: Released his debut solo album, Villa-Lobos, Guarnieri, Chávez — Works for Guitar (Turnabout).
  • 1979: Second album, AlbĂ©niz: Suite Española, Granados: Spanish Dances (Turnabout).
  • 1981: Third album, Scarlatti, Cimarosa, Paganini, Giuliani — Italienische Gitarrenmusik (FSM).
  • 1982: Fourth album, Manuel Barrueco Plays Bach: Lute Suites Nos. 2 & 4 (Vox Cum Laude).
  • 1983: Fifth album, AlbĂ©niz, Granados — Spanische Gitarrenmusik (Ex Libris).
  • 1984: American premiere of TĹŤru Takemitsu’s To the Edge of Dream with the Boston Symphony / Seiji Ozawa. He was featured on the guitar compilation album Spotlight on Guitar (Turnabout).
  • 1987: Sixth album, Manuel Barrueco Plays De Falla, Ponce & Rodrigo (EMI).
  • 1988: Seventh album, Manuel Barrueco Plays Mozart & Sor (EMI).
  • 1989: Eighth album, Manuel Barrueco Plays Brouwer, Villa-Lobos & Orbon (EMI).
  • 1990: Was featured on two EMI albums: Mozart: Duets for Flute & Guitar along with flautist Ransom Wilson, and On the Beautiful Blue Danube by The King’s Singers, with double bassist Georg Hörtnagel and clarinettist Sabine Meyer.
  • 1991: FSM Vox released the compilation Manuel Barrueco spielt Gitarrenmusik aus Spanien, Italien, Brasilien und Mexiko.
  • 1992: Was appointed Professor of Guitar at the Peabody Institute. He released his album Manuel Barrueco Plays AlbĂ©niz & Turina (EMI) and was featured on the album Latin Guitar Festival (Vox Cameo Classics) along with Konrad Ragossnig and Walter Feybli. Besides, VoxBox released the compilation Manuel Barrueco — 300 Years of Guitar Masterpieces.
  • 1993: Released two solo albums on EMI: Manuel Barrueco Plays Bach & De VisĂ©e and Falla: 7 canciones populares españolas, Granados: 12 danzas españolas; and also was featured on Annie Laurie: Folksongs of the British Isles by The King’s Singers (EMI).
  • 1994: Released three albums: Manuel Barrueco Plays Lennon & McCartney and Portrait From Bach to Lennon/McCartney on EMI, and Sometime Ago (Angel Records) featuring compositions by Corea, Jarrett, Simon & Harrison.
  • 1995: Composer TĹŤru Takemitsu wrote his last orchestral piece, Spectral Canticle for violin, guitar and orchestra, for him and violinist Frank Peter Zimmerman.
  • 1997: Released his celebrated album Rodrigo (EMI) with the Philharmonia Orchestra / Plácido Domingo, as well as J.S. Bach Sonatas (EMI) and Spanish Guitar Recital (Red Line).
  • 1998: Released his album Cantos y Danzas (EMI) with soprano Barbara Hendricks and flautist Emmanuel Pahud.
  • 1999: Released his album ¡Cuba! (EMI).
  • 2000: Appeared on Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood episode 1757.
  • 2001: Released the album Nylon & Steel (Angel Records) along with Al Di Meola, Steve Morse and Andy Summers.
  • 2004: European release of his album Concierto Barroco (EMI) with the Galicia Symphony Orchestra / VĂ­ctor Pablo PĂ©rez, featuring works by Vivaldi, Roberto Sierra and Arvo Pärt.
  • 2005: American release of the album Concierto Barroco on Koch International Classics, receiving a Latin Grammy nomination for Best Classical Album. He appeared on the documentary Aaron Shearer: A Life with Guitar (Michael Lawrence Films).
  • 2006: Michael Lawrence Films produced a documentary starring him, Manuel Barrueco: A Gift and a Life, featuring several performances and interviews.
  • 2007: First release on Tonar Music: Solo Piazzolla, which received a Grammy nomination for Best Instrumental Soloist Performance (Without Orchestra).
  • 2008: Two new releases on Tonar Music with the Cuarteto Latinoamericano: Tango Sensations: Music of Piazzolla & Guastavino and Sounds of the Americas, which won a Latin Grammy for Best Classical Contemporary Composition (Inca Dances by Gabriela Lena Frank) the following year.
  • 2009: Released the album Virtuoso Guitar Duos (Tonar Music) along with Franco Platino.
  • 2010: Released his album Tárrega! (Tonar Music), receiving a Latin Grammy nomination for Best Classical Album. He appeared on the two-hour documentary Bach & Friends (Michael Lawrence Films), where world-class musicians share their innermost thoughts and personal reflections on the power and genius of the most influential composer in history.
  • 2011: Recipient of the United States Artist Fontanals Fellowship for Artistic Excellence.
  • 2012: Released his album Chaconne — A Baroque Recital (Tonar Music). Tonar also reissued his Bach Sonatas released in 1997 on EMI.
  • 2013: Released the album Medea: Spanish Guitar Music by AlbĂ©niz, Granados and Manolo SanlĂşcar (Tonar Music) with the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra / VĂ­ctor Pablo PĂ©rez, receiving a Latin Grammy nomination for Best Classical Album.
  • 2014: Released the album China West (Tonar Music) along with the Beijing Guitar Duo.
  • 2016: Released his album Fernando Sor: The Beethoven of the Guitar (Tonar Music). In addition, Tonar released Nicholas Simmons’ coffee-table book No. 58: Manuel Barrueco, Robert Ruck, & a Guitar, which tells the story of Barrueco’s legendary guitar No. 58 by Robert Ruck — one of the most famous classical guitars in the world.
  • 2019: Released the album Heitor Villa-Lobos: Guitar Concerto, Harmonica Concerto, Sexteto mĂ­stico, Quinteto instrumental (Naxos) with the harmonica player JosĂ© Staneck, the OSESP Ensemble and the SĂŁo Paulo Symphony Orchestra / Giancarlo Guerrero. He appeared on Now Hear This TV mini-series season 1, episode 3, Scarlatti: Man Out of Time.
  • 2020: Released his last album, Music from Cuba and Spain, Sierra: Sonata para Guitarra (Tonar Music), being nominated for a Latin Grammy for Best Classical Album.

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