November 21, 1852, Villarreal, Castellón – December 15, 1909
Francisco de Asís Tárrega y Eixea was a Spanish composer and guitarist of the Romantic period, known as father of modern classical guitar.
It is said that Francisco’s father played flamenco and several other music styles on his guitar; when his father was away working as a watchman at the Convent of San Pascual, the child would take his father’s guitar and attempt to make the beautiful sounds he had heard.
As a composer Tárrega was conservative, his style was similar to the general trends in the second half of the 19th century. A virtuoso on his instrument, he was known as the „Sarasate of the guitar”.
Tárrega is considered to have laid the foundations for 20th century classical guitar and for increasing interest in the guitar as a recital instrument. Tárrega preferred small intimate performances over the concert stage.