Marcelo Barbero was one of the greatest mid-century makers of both classical and flamenco instruments, but is almost universally acknowledged as the archetypal flamenco guitar builder. Although trained in the workshop of Jose Ramirez II, his later, mature style was more along the lines of Esteso and Santos. After the death of Santos Hernandez, Barbero was hired by Santos' widow, Mathilda Ruiz, to complete outstanding orders that remained unfinished. Working out of Santos' workshop at the famous Aduana 23 location, Barbero completed construction of several guitars, using Santos' parts and tools. Barbero is the only maker in history to have been in this unique position, and it was here that he learned first-hand, many of the secrets that Santos kept to himself during his lifetime. This rare flamenco guitar is just one of these instruments, hence it bears the label "Viuda de Santos Hernandez." It was previously owned by the great flamenco guitarist Manolo Sanlucar - in fact, it was the guitar that he played with at the beginning of his professional career.
The condition is excellent considering the age, the top is pristine with only the standard hairline cracks along the side of the fingerboard. The back and sides have some cracks which have been expertly repaired. Playability is superb and the sound is extra sweet for a flamenco. Highly collectible and wonderful for performing in recital or recording environments, this guitar rates in the top class of instruments we have seen.