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Summer holidays are coming to an end in Scotland and I've been looking for some new pieces for a couple of my pupils. I was looking for something a little different that would stretch their playing in first and third position as well as give their bowing arm a bit of a work out too!
After a little searching, I found three pieces by the prominent Czech concert violinist and composer František Drdla.
Night Winds Op. 127 No. 4 which is a Moto Perpetuo with lots of sautille bowing!
Tarantelle Op. 112 some strong, even finger work required for that one.
Intermezzo Op. 101 some good legato and staccato bowing with some nice and easy double stopping.
I do hope some of these pieces are useful to for you too.
Vieuxtemps Elégie in F minor, Opus 30, was first published in 1854 and was scored for viola or cello and piano. It is a great piece to place with lyrical phrases and some nifty passages to give your fingers a good workout!
Here is an arrangement for Viola and String Orchestra which I hope you find useful.
Faure's Berceuse Op.16 was first performed at the Societe Nationale in 1880 by the violinist Ovide Musin. The piece has a song like quality and is instantaneously recognisable as a work by Faure. After hearing the first performance of Berceuse, Julien Hamelle offered to publish Faure's works.
This arrangement for Viola and String Orchestra is based on Faure's own arrangement for Violin and Orchestra.
On May 12, 1739, Vanhal was born into serfdom in Nechanice, Bohemia! He learnt music from his family, friends and local musicians and went on to become a wealthy composer. He composed over 100 string quartets and 73 symphonies. Haydn much admired Vanhal's symphonies which were played as far away as America.
Vanhal made his money also by composing music for the newly emerging middle classes. However, the music he composed for the middle classes is now seen as being over simplistic and that it took him away from developing his compositions.
The theme and variations were originally for cello but it also works on viola too!