As is well known, Antonio de Torres was the great revolutionizer of the guitar on the 19th century, and he was who gave the basis for the instrument today known as classical guitar. It has been said a lot about Torres and his work, some more or some less exact information based on extreme scientific rigorousness or on absolute intuition. This is the reason why years ago I decided to study as much guitars from the Maestro as I could so to make my own judgments based on empirical data and also on the subjective sensations I had with each guitar. After the detailed study of more than thirty original instruments by Torres, and of restoring a few of them, and of the lots of hours of conversations about Torres and his guitars with masters and friends like José Luis Romanillos, Carles Trepat, Jaume Bosser, Stefano Grondona or Raül Yagüe, I propose different models of Torres’ guitars.
There are instruments with different plantilla or from different moments, with archaizing or modern sound, but always trying to be loyal to the concept of guitar that I think Maestro Torres had in mind at the time he was working, which I think is also a present-day concept.
My Torres model guitars are always based in the direct study of the original instruments, using photographs and publications as complements but never as the only information source. I believe the reproduction of an instrument is literally impossible without studying the original, and very dificult without having studied several instruments of the same builder.
All the instruments will be given strung and with a semi-rigid case.
– Model Torres popular:
Guitar based on the medium size instruments of the first epoch of Torres, originally designed for the popular music. These instruments used to be made with cypress, walnut, mulberry or other cheap woods and its decoration was very simple. Following this concept, in this model I use cypress for the back and ribs and cedar for the neck. The sound reminiscent of the early 19th century instruments makes this guitar very suitable for classical-romantic and folk music. Wooden pegs or Pegheds. String lenght: 639. Price around 3500 €.
– Model Torres 1865:
Guitar based on the medium-big plantilla of the first epoch of Torres, used in some of the best instruments Torres built for great masters like Tárrega, Pujol or Llobet. Guitars with a brilliant and powerful sound, but with the concept of light and apparently plain instruments of Torres work. Neck made with cedar or mahogany, back and ribs made with cypress, maple or rosewood, simple and elegant decoration always based on original Torres instruments. High quality tunning machines (Alessi, sloane…) or Pegheds. String lenght: 650 mm. Price around 3700 €.
– Model Torres 1885:
This guitar is designed on the biggest plantilla of the second epoch, namely on an instrument of 1885. The bigger plantilla gives to the instrument some extra sound amplitude, and it’s a guitar for the musician who are looking for a Torres model near to the actual guitar sizes. Neck made with cedar or mahogany, and back and ribs made with maple, cypress or rosewood. As in the previous model, the decorations is simple and elegant, always based on original Torres instruments. High quality tunning machines (Alessi, Sloane…) or Pegheds. String lenght: 650 mm. Price around 3700 €.
– Model Torres Pujol:
Philologycal copy of the 1863 guitar used by Emili Pujol, maybe the best guitar I’ve ever heard (in the first photography you can see the original next to my copy). From the many hours I’ve worked with the original instrument, I attempt to copy not only its appearance, but also its specific personality. In other words, I try to put myself in Torres’ mind when he built this guitar. This instrument has a slightly different bracing from classic Torres work (open low transverse bar and extended fan bracing) and has tornavoz, which gives a unique and differenciated sound from the other guitars I build. Back and ribs of the original guitar are made with Rio rosewood, but as it is a protected specie, in my instrument is replaced by similar woods like Madagascar or Honduras rosewoods. The rest of materials and all the decoration follow strictly and faithfully the original, with the neck made of cedar and the rosette, bindings and purflings more elaborated than other models. I always string this guitar with Knobloch Sterling Silver, and it’s a perfect instrument to play music by the great classic masters like Tárrega, Llobet or Pujol. High quality tunning machines (Alessi, Sloane…). String lenght: 650 mm. Price around 4900 €.
-Except in the Torres Pujol model, I can make “study” versions of all these instruments. In this kind of guitars the decoration is reduced to the minimum and they are made with less aesthetic quality materials (although with very good sound and structural qualities). If you are interested in the prices, just contact me.
– Tornavoz. This is a metal cone, normally brass, fixed on the soundhole of the instrument and inside the soundbox. Despite there are lots of myths about the tornavoz (some even say it gives a metallic sound to the guitar!!!), what this gadget does is “closing” the soundbox and lower its base frequency (Helmhölz ressonance). On the player’s point of view, this gives to the guitar a surprisingly sweet and velvety sound, with deep bass and extremely soft treble registers. Tornavoz for medium or big plantilla guitars: plus 550€.
– Rigid case, price depends on the model requested.
– Pegheds. These are mechanical pegs with the look of traditional wooden pegs. Maybe aesthetically they aren’t as beautiful as the original wooden ones, but their precision is amazing. This choice will not change the final price of the instrument.