Antonio Membrado, Spanish classical guitarist, Died at 81

Antonio Membrado was born on March 21, 1935, in Madrid and died on December 3, 2016.

He was a Spanish classical guitarist and composer resident in France since 1959.

Membrado was a student of Andrés Segovia and gave many concerts in France and abroad.

In 1945, Membrado began playing the laúd, a plectrum-plugged string instrument popular in Spain and used in rondallas (small ensembles plucking instruments with plectrum such as bandurria or laúd, and with fingers, such as guitar).

When he was only 13 years of age, the guitarist Manuel Hernandez initiated his future musical career.

Membrado also studied the piano at the Madrid Conservatory with the pianist and composer Pedro Carre.

He met Regino Sainz de la Maza and entered the Madrid Academia guitar class, in 1952.

Membrado won the Madrid Conservatory Extraordinary Prize, in 1956.

At 17 years old, Membrado also began to appear in his first guitar recitals in Spain.

Then, at 21 years old, Membrado met Andrés Segovia for the first time at the Accademia Musicale Chigiana in Italy, which he attended until 1959.

Additionally, Andrés Segovia asked Membrado to deliver the Academy closing concerts in 1958 and 1959.

During September 1956, he won the First Medal of the International Competition in Geneva.

During that year, his international career began with appearances in France, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, the United States, etc.

Since 1963, he published LP recordings of works by Vivaldi, Schubert, Bach, Villa-Lobos, Brouwer, Burchard, Milan, and some of his own works, including a live recording of his concert at the Lincoln Center in New York in 1975.

He also arranged works for the singer Paco Ibáñez and accompanied him on his first LP in 1964.

Also to his performing career, Membrado served as guitar teacher at the national academy of Bourg-la-Reine, where he trained numerous pupils, many of them embracing professional music careers.

Membrado also took part in many festivals including Strasbourg, Lille, Troyes, Bern, Avignon, Saint-Tropez, Carcassonne, etc., and delivered several master-classes, e.g. at Les Arcs, Evian and Carcassonne.

Antonio Membrado passed away at 81 years old.