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Manuel Ponce's Sonata Romantica for Classical Guitar - Free Videos and Sheet Music

Updated on September 6, 2013
Manuel Ponce
Manuel Ponce | Source


In 1929 Mauel Ponce (1882-1948) created one of the greatest works in the classical guitar repertoire: his Sonata Romantica.

The story is that the guitarist Andres Segovia asked him to compose a piece for the guitar which was in the style of the Romantic Period. The piece is deciated to Andres Segovia and its subtitle is Hommage a Franz Schubert. Schubert was a leading composer during the Romantic Period.

One thing that I love about this piece is that it is a Sonata in four movements. This is one of the first long, multi-movement pieces for guitar that I ever listened to. When I first discovered it I was struggling with the quesiton of whether the guitar repertoire contained any long, multi-movement pieces at all. (As compared to say, the piano repertoire, which is full of them). I have since discovered countless pieces that are this substantial. But the Ponce Sonatas will always be special to me because they were the first pieces like that that I listened to.

Here are the first and fourth movements, which are my favorites. They are being performed by David Hawkins at the University of Southern Mississippi in April 2009.

Ponce's Sonata Romantica Movement I

Ponce's Sonata Romantica Movement IV

Recommended Recording

My favorite recording of this piece is my Jason Vieaux.  He recorded not only this piece, but all of Ponce's other guitar sonatas.  And they are all on one CD! 

Jason Vieaux Plays Ponce Sonata


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    • Ari Lamstein profile image

      Ari Lamstein 4 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      @Belfer: You are absolutely correct. I wrote this article before I was familiar with other substantial, multi-movement guitar works. I have updated the text accordingly. Thanks for your comment!

    • profile image

      Belfer 4 years ago

      Once again, please do not repeat this utterly wrong phrase "The guitar repertoire simply does not have many multi-movement works".

      By simple fact you repeat it all and every time you describe multi movement work from guitar repertoire you prove that it is far from true.

    • profile image

      Derdriu 6 years ago

      Ari Lamstein: Thank you for the brief background details as well as the two masterly performances of the first and fourth movements!

      Voted up, etc.,


    • Daniel Carter profile image

      Daniel Carter 7 years ago from Western US

      Great hub! Please write an article about Ponce, his music and life. Would like to see more info on him in this article.