The hermit Joan Garí is the protagonist of a Montserrat legend set in the time of Guifré el Pilós, according to which the mentioned hermit surrendered to harsh penances in a cave in the mountains of Montserrat. The demon, determined to tempt him, possesses Riquilda, the daughter of Count Guifré, through whom he seduces Garí and manages to make him fall into sin. He, horrified by his absence, in a moment of madness, kills the maiden and later, repentant of his actions, travels to Rome to apologize to the Holy Father. After a long atonement, God forgives him through the birth of a baby son of the count, and the maiden returns to life.
This legend has been the subject of several literary elaborations ―such as poems by Verdaguer, Maragall, Rusiñol or Sagarra― and of outstanding musical works, such as the stage poem Fra Garí, by Enric Morera, released in 1906; the opera Garín, by Tomàs Bretón ― premiered at the Liceu in 1892 and which contains a sardana that became very popular at the time― and the present symphonic poem Fra Garí, by Fèlix Martínez i Comín, written in 1963 for two couples, harp and timpani, where the author uses the sensuality of the sound of the harp to evoke temptation.
In order to stay true to the original sound, this instrumentation for a large band also includes the tible and the tenora, which, at the same time, give it the genuine timbre of Catalan music.