In Review, Rafael Aguirre in Concert, Indianapolis, March 31, 2011

Rafael Aguirre was a joy to watch and meet.  The young man, who flew in from Germany the day of the performance, seemed fresh and energetic as he performed.

The program started with the Asturias which set the romantic mood for the first set.  Next, Mendelssohn’s famous Gondola song with its deceptively difficult fingerings and swaying beat, made for a really nice relaxed mood.  The Schumann ‘Kinderzenen’ is a piece comprised of small movements; each movement as described by the author’s perspective of being a child.  Some pieces, very fast.  Others, slow.  Everything in between.   Really an interesting choice for the program.  Ending the first set, Gran Jota.  Tarrega lights up the room with dynamic fireworks; Rafael nailed it and crowd went wild (for a classical guitar concert).

The Second half of music included more modern repertoire but did not compromise the overall romantic, impressionistic, emotional content of the program.  The Gershwin preludes were exquisite.  My mind fails for the names of each.  The Toccata by Rodrigo is a piece he wrote before the famous ‘Aranjuez’ concerto.  Rodrigo was struggling financially and as Rafael described, the Tocatta tone is somewhat dark and introspective as was Rodrigo’s life at that time.  Claire de lune remained in my head all night after the concert.  It’s just a wonderful piece of music and great to hear the guitar.  Rafael finished with the de Falla’s ‘La vida breve’ and seemed to save the best performance for last.

Overall, just another outstanding guitarist presented by the Indiana Society for the Classical Guitar.  And, a wonderful opportunity for me to meet Mr Aguirre and be entertained and inspired by his performance and his warm and optimistic personality.


Issac Albeniz (1860-1909)


Felix Mendelssohn (1809-1847)

Song Without Words Op. 16 No. 6, ‘Venetian Boat Song’

Robert Shumann (1810-1856)

Kinderszenen Opus 15

Francisco Tarrega (1852-1909)

Gran Jota


George Gershwin (1898-1937)

Three Preludes

Joaquin Rodrigo (1901-1999)


Claude Debussy (1862-1918)

Clair De Lune

Manuel de Falla (1876-1946)

Danza de “La vida breve”

Rafael also played an encore piece from a very popular science fiction movie series…  use the FORCE and imagine what he played.


  1. #1 by jamey F on March 31, 2011 - 11:10 AM

    This is excellent. Keep up the great work.

    and, maybe a share button?

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