The Guitar concerto, for guitar and small orchestra, was originally an orchestral fantasy, but then the guitar got a more prominent role and the work was dedicated to guitarist Andrés Segovia. The work is composed by the Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos, and had its premiere in 1951.
Villa-Lobos is Brazil’s best known composer of classical music. In his early years he explored the country’s indigenous people, and found a lot of local tunes he later used in his compositions. But he also went to Paris for a more European musical education, and was in contact with the greats of his time. Though Brazil was far away from Europe, both culturally and geographically, Villa-Lobos put the country on the musical map.
Most famous among his works are his series of nine suites called Bachianas Brasileiras. They are an attempt to mix Brazilian folk influences with the structure of Bach. Each piece is written for different instruments and voices, so it is a very mixed lot.