Pablo de Sarasate

by popularity


Airs écossais, Op.34Airs espagnols, Op.18


Ballade, Op.31Bolero, Op.30


Caprice Basque, Op.24Caprice sur Roméo et Juliette, Op.5Carmen Concert Fantasy, Op.25Chansons Russes, Op.49Confidences


Danse Espagnole, Op.37


El canto del ruiseñor, Op.29


Fantaisie sur 'Der Freischütz', Op.14Fantasy on 'Die Zauberflöte', Op.54


Hommage à Rossini, Op.2


Introduction et Caprice Jota, Op.41Introduction et Fandango varié, Op.40Introduction et Tarantelle, Op.43


Jota Aragonesa, Op.27Jota de Pablo, Op.52Jota de Pamplona, Op.50Jota de San Fermin, Op.36


La Chasse, Op.44Le Rève, Op.53Les Adieux, Op.9L'Esprit Follet, Op.48L'éventail noirLos pájaros de Chile


Melodie roumaine, Op.47Miramar, Op.42Moscovienne, Op.12Muiñiera, Op.32


Navarra, Op.33Nocturne-Serenade, Op.45Nouvelle fantaisie sur 'Faust', Op.13


Peteneras, Op.35Preludio para violín soloPrière et berceuse, Op.17


Reminiscence de Martha, Op.19Réverie, Op.4Romance et Gavotte de Mignon, Op.16


Serenata andaluza, Op.28Sommeil, Op.11Souvenir de Domont, Op.8Souvenirs de FaustSpanish Dances, Op.21Spanish Dances, Op.22Spanish Dances, Op.23Spanish Dances, Op.26


Viva Sevilla!, Op.38


ZigeunerweisenZortzico de Iparraguirre, Op.39
Pablo Martín Melitón de Sarasate y Navascués (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈpaβlo saɾaˈsate]; 10 March 1844 – 20 September 1908), commonly known as Pablo de Sarasate, was a Spanish violin virtuoso, composer and conductor of the Romantic period. His best known works include Zigeunerweisen (Gypsy Airs), the Spanish Dances, and the Carmen Fantasy.
Pablo Sarasate was born in Pamplona, Navarre, the son of an artillery bandmaster. Apparently, after seeing his father struggle with a passage for a long time, he picked up the violin and played it perfectly. He began studying the violin with his father at the age of five and later took lessons from a local teacher. His musical talent became evident early on and he appeared in his first public concert in A Coruña at the age of eight.
His performance was well-received, and caught the attention of a wealthy patron who provided the funding for Sarasate to study under Manuel Rodríguez Saez in Madrid, where he gained the favor of Queen Isabella II. Later, as his abilities developed, he was sent to study under Jean-Delphin Alard at the Paris Conservatoire at the age of twelve.
There, at seventeen, Sarasate entered a competition for the Premier Prix and won his first prize, the Conservatoire's highest honor. (No other Spanish violinist achieved this until Manuel Quiroga did so in 1911; Quiroga was frequently compared to Sarasate throughout his career.)
Sarasate, who had been publicly performing since childhood, made his Paris debut as a concert violinist in 1860, and played in London the following year. Over the course of his career, he toured many parts of the world, performing in Europe, North America, and South America. His artistic pre-eminence was due principally to the purity of his tone, which was free from any tendency towards the sentimental or rhapsodic, and to that impressive facility of execution that made him a virtuoso. In his early career, Sarasate performed mainly opera fantasies, most notably the Carmen Fantasy, and various other pieces that he had composed. The popularity of Sarasate's Spanish flavour in his compositions is reflected in the work of his contemporaries. For example, the influences of Spanish music can be heard in such notable works as Édouard Lalo's Symphonie espagnole which was dedicated to Sarasate; Georges Bizet's Carmen; and Camille Saint-Saëns' Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, written expressly for Sarasate and dedicated to him.
Of Sarasate's idiomatic writing for his instrument, the playwright and music critic George Bernard Shaw once declared that though there were many composers of music for the violin, there were but few composers of violin music. Of Sarasate's talents as performer and composer, Shaw said that he "left criticism gasping miles behind him". Sarasate's own compositions are mainly show-pieces designed to demonstrate his exemplary technique. Perhaps the best known of his works is Zigeunerweisen (1878), a work for violin and orchestra. Another piece, the Carmen Fantasy (1883), also for violin and orchestra, makes use of themes from Georges Bizet's opera Carmen. Probably his most performed encores are his four books of Spanish Dances, Opp. 21, 22, 23, 26, brief pieces designed to please the listener's ear and show off the performer's talent. He also made arrangements of a number of other composers' work for violin, and composed sets of variations on "potpourris" drawn from operas familiar to his audiences, such as his Fantasia on La forza del destino (his Opus 1), his "Souvenirs de Faust", or his variations on themes from Die Zauberflöte. At Brussels, he met Berthe Marx, who traveled with him as soloist and accompanist on his tours through Europe, Mexico, and the US; playing in about 600 concerts. She also arranged Sarasate's Spanish Dances for the piano. In 1904, he made a small number of recordings. In all his travels Sarasate returned to Pamplona each year for the San Fermín festival.
Sarasate died in Biarritz, France, on 20 September 1908, from chronic bronchitis. He bequeathed his violin, made by Antonio Stradivari in 1724, to the Musée de la Musique. The violin now bears his name as the Sarasate Stradivarius in his memory. His second Stradivari violin, the Boissier of 1713, is now owned by Real Conservatorio Superior de Música, Madrid. Among his violin pupils was Alfred de Sève. The Pablo Sarasate International Violin Competition is held in Pamplona.
A number of works for violin were dedicated to Sarasate, including Henryk Wieniawski's Violin Concerto No. 2, Édouard Lalo's Symphonie espagnole, Camille Saint-Saëns' Violin Concerto No. 3 and his Introduction and Rondo Capriccioso, Max Bruch's Scottish Fantasy, and Alexander Mackenzie's Pibroch Suite. Also inspired by Sarasate is William H. Potstock's Souvenir de Sarasate.
Sarasate composed more than fifty works, all of which include the violin. He assigned opus numbers to 54 of them.