La Catedral (The Cathedral) – Prelude

La Catedral (The Cathedral) – Prelude

This first lesson on La Catedral (The Cathedral) is going to help you learn, and understand, this modern classical guitar piece composed by Agustín Barrios. We will help you nail this opening Prelude, in B minor, through small bite size micro studies.

Get the Score

Get your copy of the original fingerings for La Catedral’s Prelude below. This is a faithful reproduction of Barrios’ original manuscript, with TAB, so you can actually see what he had in mind when he wrote this amazing prelude.

La Catedral (The Cathedral) Prelude

La catedral (the cathedral) lesson prelude in b minor by agustin barrios
The original format to La Catedral’s Prelude – 1 voice.

This later addition to La Catedral, Barrios added it in concert in 1939, has always been controversial. One of Barrios’ students maintained that Barrios was “persuaded” to add it in, however I am not so sure. The score and the musical ideas within it, all seem to point to Bach. Which is supported by the fact that the second movement is a homage to Bach.

In this first video lesson, we cover the opening phrase for La Catedral (The Cathedral) prelude, and the next two phrases after it. Heads up, the prelude to La Catedral is going to test your left-hand durability – do not press hard. Notice how the main idea is just a static left hand hold, the right hand is doing all the work here.

La Catedral Prelude Lesson (part 2)

Barrios’ original ending fingering

The second lesson, on the Prelude in B minor, will cover the middle section; and that glorious accampanellas ending. The video above presents Barrios’ original fingering, in the score, while I show the modern alternatives. There is a lot there, so grab your copy of Barrios’ original score and follow along.

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Want More?

Check out this lesson on Barrios’ mighty tremolo piece below. Not for the faint-hearted.


Classical guitarist who strives to share a little #6stringinspiration.

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