Víctor Monge SERRANITO


Since Birth

Victor Monge “Serranito” was born in Madrid, 16th July, 1942 in the bosom of a poor family. His father Eloy, who was a carpenter, made a big effort to make his family, consisting of a wife and three children, go through. Belarmina, his wife, devoted herself to the children upbringing.

For Victor, it was decisive the fact that his father kept a guitar in spite of not being able to play it. As a very small child and encouraged by his father, he started playing three o four strains, and he kept on learning with the help of a neighbour who glimpsed the surprising skill with which that child assimilated the little knowledge he was trying to put across.

This skill turns Serranito into a good example of learning precocity, because when he was barely twelve he was already working a professional and composing his own music.

In spite of what one might think, his nickname does not have anything to do with the Sevillian bullfighter of the end of the 19th century, and the beginning of the 20th, who became a fully - qualified bullfighter in 1905. After that he got a meteoric success that only lasted for about three years because he was mortally injured in Astorga (León) in 1908. Serranito is a pet name because he was the youngest member of the group called “Los Serranos” and in which his brother also took part as a singer. This trio of young artists performed in El Riscal, which was a meeting place for film actors and actresses in 1953 and 1954, and as one could imagine, the music performed there had little to do with flamenco.

Two years later, when he was 14, he was hired by the Taberna Gitana, known afterwards as “Torres Bermejas”. The next step in his career is his envolving in the formation of a ballet group with which he made his debut in Pasapoga (Madrid) and was a landmark in his life because he was reasserted as a professional guitarist.

His artistic tenacity has always made him think about the possibility of a solo career, and we must not understand this as pretentiousness but as a vital necessity.
He dedicated the first years of his career to travel all over Spain as a member of different companies, the last traces of the so called troupes, which were led by Juanito Valderrama, Antonio Mairena and Marifé de Triana. He also accompanied Lebrijano, José Menese and Rafael Farina among others.

In one of his trips, in La Campana in Seville, meanwhile he was in a gathering with Pepe Pinto, Antonio Mairena and la Niña de los Peines. She started singing bulerías, that shy and discreet child took out his guitar and started playing it very quietly because he did not want to disturb. To everybody´s surprise they encouraged him to play for the Goddess of Cante, who was very pleased and whose husband could not make out whether the applause was for her or for the child.



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