Mauro Giuliani (1781-1829) was a renowned guitarist/composer of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. His virtuosity on the instrument earned him the sobriquet "the Paganini of the Guitar" in Europe. After settling in Vienna in 1806, he became a favorite of the Archduchess Marie Louise of Austria (Napoleon's second wife). He was much admired by, and worked with, many of the greatest musicians of the day, including Beethoven, Rossini, Hummel, Schubert, and Spohr.
Written in a Classical and Post-Classical style, Giuliani's works were often praised for being so skillfully adapted to the tone and technical demands of the six-string guitar. One of his most popular works was the Grande Overture, Op. 61, which was the first to appear in print outside Vienna.
The popularity of Rossini during this time is reflected in the six Rossiniana, Op. 119-124, which Giuliani composed on arias taken from Rossini operas.
The single-movement Sonata Eroica, Op. 150, was published posthumously in 1840 by Ricordi.
Classical guitarist David Russell has made four previous recordings for Telarc, including the music of Latin composers Barrios and Moreno-Torroba; guitar concertos of Rodrigo; and an album of arrangements of Scottish and Irish folk music and dances titled Message of the Sea (CD-80492). Winner of numerous international guitar competitions, including the Andrés Segovia Competition and the prestigious Francisco Tarrega Competition in Spain, he has twice been the recipient of the Julian Bream Guitar prize, and was recently named a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Music in London.