Spanish composer and pianist Enrique Granados was born in Lleida on 27 July 1867 and studied piano in Barcelona with Francisco Jurnet and Joan Baptista Pujol, and then privately in Paris with Charles-Wilfrid de Bériot, who encouraged the young composer's improvisation at the keyboard. In Paris he also studied composition with Felip Pedrell, and whilst there, learnt all he needed for his future career.
Back in Barcelona, his first success was with the opera Maria del Carmen (1898), and soon afterwards came his popular piano suite Goyescas, from which he later produced an operatic version. He also created the Granados Academy, to teach piano in the Bériot style.
The staged version of Goyescas was moved from Paris to New York, due to World War I, and Granados arrived in New York in December 1915. The staging was not specially successful, and only ran for five performances, but Granados delayed his return to Barcelona because he had been invited to play at the White House on 7 March. He also recorded some piano rolls in New York for the Duo-Art system.
On 11 March 1916, Granados set sail for England on a British ship, and visited London. Then, on 24 March 1916, Granados and his wife sailed from Folkestone for Dieppe on the Sussex, which was torpedoed in the English Channel by a German submarine, with the loss of about twenty people, including Granados (aged forty-eight) and his wife.
A Charming Touch - Mike Wheeler listens to Beethoven, Brahms, Granados and Mompou, played by Ingrid Cusidó
Ensemble. Dancing Vigour - Percussionists Owen Gunnell and Oliver Cox, appreciated by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Gorgeously Irresistible - Piano quintets by Granados and Turina, strongly recommended by Gerald Fenech. '... an almost instinctive sense of interplay between the players ...'
CD Spotlight. Great Heights - Orchestral music by Enrique Granados, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... superbly played by the Barcelona Symphony Orchestra ...'
CD Spotlight. Of Huge Interest - Orchestral music by Granados, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... well crafted and very tuneful.'
Ensemble. Wit and Effervescence - Music in the Time of Goya, by Derek Murray
Ensemble. Shifting Moods - Catalan pianist Eudald Buch at the Buxton Festival, heard by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Appropriate Innocence - Spanish song, familiar and unfamiliar, heard by Paul Sarcich. 'High quality work all round.'
CD Spotlight. Atmosphere and Rhythm - Twentieth century Spanish songs, recommended by Ron Bierman. '... beautifully sung with spirited and intelligent accompaniment.'
Ensemble. Guitar and Cello - Maria Nockin listens to Eliot Fisk and Yehuda Hanani
CD Spotlight. Melancholic Treatment - Iberian and Latin solo piano music, heard by Ron Bierman. 'Rosa Antonelli over-caresses most of these nostalgic Latin pieces.'
CD Spotlight. Infectious Rhythms - Granados' 'Goyescas', heard by Robert Anderson. 'Garrick Ohlsson emerges with flying colours ...'
CD Spotlight. Buoyant Works - A recital by Amber Yiu-Hsuan Liao, heard by Howard Smith. '... often engaging and perfectly serviceable.'
CD Spotlight. Coruscating Brilliance - Spanish inspirations for two pianists, heard by Robert Anderson. '[A] joyous recital ...'
Ensemble. Orchestral Firepower - Lawrence Budmen sends his final report from the 2010 Tanglewood Festival
Nicely Judged - A recital by harpist Anneleen Lenaerts impresses Mike Wheeler
Ensemble. Classy Performance - Summer with The Derwent Singers, reviewed by Mike Wheeler
CD Spotlight. Beyond Piazzolla - Tangos and dances played by Fionnuala Hunt, reviewed by Malcolm Tattersall. '... relaxing and eminently listenable ...'
Ensemble. Dazzling technique - Julia Fischer plays Sibelius, appreciated by Lawrence Budmen
Record box. Efficient and sensitive - A Philip Amalong piano recital, reviewed by Patric Standford