He was a guitarist and lutenist born in London, England whose father was a jazz guitarist and he bought him a classical guitar for his 11th birthday as well as urging him to learn the piano.
Hailed as a child prodigy he attended the Royal College of Music to study piano and cello after winning an junior exhibition, and he debuted at a guitar recital when he was 14. He debuted in London in 1951 but then went into the military for his National Service. He returned to music straight afterwards and formed the Julian Bream Consort in 1960 where he played the lute in the period ensemble and revived the music of the Elizabethan age.
His career was halted temporarily in 1984 when he was in a car accident where he suffered serious injuries that he needed to overcome to regain his abilities.
He worked alongside many composers and had many works dedicated to him by Richard Rodney Bennett, Benjamin Britten , William Walton, Michael Tippett and Malcolm Arnold among many others.
Regularly appearing on radio and television programmes, including his TV series Guitarra!, he was recognized and respected worldwide and a DVD was released in 2003 about his work, Julian Bream: My Life in Music.
He was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in 1964, was presented the Villa Lobos Gold Medal by Madame Villa-Lobos in 1976 and won a Grammy Award for “Best Chamber Music Performance”.
He died in Wiltshire, England in August 2020 when he was 87 years old.
Here he is performing “Heitor Villa-Lobos’s Preludes 3 and 4….