Irina Kulikova paid us all a nice visit recently, and she picked three fantastic guitars on which to play the three movements of “Sonatina” by Federico Moreno Torroba. She plays the first movement on a 2010 Pepe Romero Jr. made with a spruce top and cypress back and sides, the second movement on a powerful 1961 Arcangel Fernandez, and the third movement on a 2005 Manuel Contreras II “Double Top” that has a very classic Spanish character, which is fitting to the overall sentiment of the final movement.

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13 Responses to “Watch Irina Kulikova play Federico Moreno Torroba’s ‘Sonatina’ on 3 guitars”

  1. Nigel Shaw says:

    Great technique. I just wonder why it’s so popular nowadays with classical guitar players to just go as fast as possible. Let’s stop the speed competitions and start making some music.

    • Evan Pyle says:

      Nigel, I think her tempii are right on target with the score. Perhaps in the past most players couldn’t play cleanly at the marked tempo or just preferred it slower than marked. In any case, there’s nothing hurried in the slow 2nd movement. It’s just lovely.

  2. Jesse Vernier says:

    You need to study with a teacher Irina…….who plays an instrument other than the guitar. You have such a beautiful technique …… and exquisite control of it….but you are searching for”individuality” that really is just an illusion. Take time to celebrate the “wood” and the guitaristic techniques that are at its heart. Segovia can sound corny to many in the day and age, but he did take time to make the “Ramirez” sound…or the Fleta sound, just for his audience. Watch Lang Lang’s masterclasses. You must breath. You are already a world class technician. Become a world class artist. You are opinionated…..that’s the beginning….expect to play it differently every time..invite your audience inward, offer an escape into your heart, your dreams. The infinite is inward, not into the illusions of the distant galaxies of the physical universe.

  3. ronjazz says:

    lots of nobodies with silly criticisms here!! she is an individual, not a clone of anybody. sad that listeners are so lost in the past. as if Irina needs “help” from pseudo-intellectuals. nobody ever put up a statue to a critic.

  4. There seems to be a concerted effort to judge this players technique, when this is about selling guitars.

    I give the Manuel Contreras first place, with the Fernandez second, and the Romero third with their perspective music.

    All guitars are praise worthy so I call this with my own personal taste.

    Tom Backshear

  5. Terry Phelps says:

    Bravo , and thank you GSI I’m posting these I don’t know where I would have heard such an accomplished musician

  6. Michael Kennedy says:

    I had a master class with Irina once. She told me that except for my left hand technique, my right hand technique, and the way I held the guitar, I was an okay player.

    • Jesse Vernier says:

      If you sat and listened to Segovia play that piece… or Julian Bream… or better yet..the Spanish Lute orchestra…and I have… you would know that there is no place in Spain that “looks” like her Allegretto……… Irina has a ton of chops …… exquisite technique………Rock solid for competitions ……. and a dollar on a dime…says she regrets that performance….Bream, at his first masterclass in SF, said that he sat down for a few days planing the execution of a new piece before he even sounded it….all of the great musicians say that the space that is the silence between notes and Phrases is the most powerful influence of all…….. the Andante suggests that she knows the difference…….. and these words are directed at you young and fair Irina ….. not those of you that live without clues…

  7. James says:

    Extraordinary playing! Truly beautiful. The people criticizing above are out of their minds. They can come back and say something when they have won first place in a few prestigious competitions.

    • Richard says:

      She should play it like you sing it. Competitions are dull because it is all about flawless playing with a subtle variety in interpretation. John Williams set the standard since CBS/Columbia presents JW in 1964. I miss poetry, the epic element,breathing of the music, the spiritual element where one is taken in ones universe. It all had toen do with real playing grom the Heat, true playing.

  8. Wendi says:

    Fantastic! I look forward to seeing you in Seattle next month. Your playing is an inspiration.

  9. Richard says:

    Nice performance, but I miss the epic element. Too less breathing of the musical, Otten rushed motives. With true performances one is directed into ones universe. Play it like you sing it Irina.
    Silence must have its meaning. Silence and sound are the ying and yang and it is all about that inner dimension we want to feel. It is the spiritual element of a timeless shared inner universe.


    un seul mot : parfait !! tout est présent caractère,son,tempo,style,phrasé,technique !!
    rythme,respiration,articulation,propreté,Irina Kuikova fait partie de ces artistes exceptionnelles !! depuis longtemps ! la valse de Barrios,le caprice de Legnani,etc….et les prix qu’elle a remportés !! etc…..etc…c’est une pure merveille


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