Georg Ofterding was the viola alta player and the sister of Roehmeyer, Klara, an accomplished pianist, accompanied. Then it disappeared, only to be discovered after Draeseke's death among the music collection of Mueller Reuter. Hermann Ritter seems not to have been able to respond to it. Roeder's comment concerning Ritter is conjecture and he makes no references to published criticism or any other commentary about the work after its first performance.
More problematic is Roeder's claim that during his lifetime Draeseke never got back the manuscript materials. Draeseke finished his memoirs, Lebenserinnerungen , with the year ; they were dictated to his wife who wrote them out by hand. They have never been published but his one time pupil Hermann Stephani edited them in typescript during the 's and that typescript is presently in the Coburg city archives under the catalog entry, Coburgica No.
In reference to the year Draeseke reports:. The question therefore arises whether Draeseke actually received his manuscript back before his death or not. The information following the colon in the above quotation and set off with a cross is actually a footnote in the Coburg typescript, entered with the indication that it should replace a crossed out and totally undecipherable word which follows the colon. If Draeseke had gotten back the F major sonata which he had considered "lost for eight years" after its premiere in , then the year would have been and he would indeed still have been alive.
However, if the entry refers to a "return home" eight years after Draeseke's death, the year would be and that would agree with Roeder's assertion: on the title page of the manuscript of the F major sonata which is housed in the Saxon State Library, Dresden, one reads an entrance for the City Library of Dresden, Noten Mueller Reuter had died in ; had the sonata been found among his holdings and then returned to Draeseke's widow in ?
If Draeseke had the score in the last year of his life, there is no correspondence regarding the matter. Whatever the reality, the F major viola alta sonata slumbered in the Saxon State Library until , when the present writer examined it and determined to bring about its publication. In conjunction with the Italian violist Franco Sciannameo and the American pianist and musicologist William James Lawson, an editorial team was set up and the F major viola alta sonata was edited for performance and publication.
Heartfelt gratitude is herewith expressed for the efficiency and kindness of the librarians in the music division of the Saxon State Library, Dresden, without whose assistance the undertaking would not have been possible. On the program was the composer's Sonata No. Though the movement is marked Moderato elegiaco, the opening motive seems to contain in itself elements of dramatic pathos: presented embedded in six notes of double stops, it attempts three times to free itself from the envelopment before finding its single line expression, where after the piano takes it over for harmonic development.
Developmental motives appear in the transition to the presentation of the secondary lyrical theme and at the conclusion of the exposition of this theme a major motive consisting of four 16th notes and a sequence of a dotted 8th note rhythm is introduced. When the viola presents the secondary lyrical theme harmonized in thirds there follows an obligatory repeat of the exposition , C minor returns and with it the beginning of the development.
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All the major and developmental motives are employed but the intricacies of relationships require far more space than can be allowed here. What is apparent even on first hearing is Draeseke's consummate mastery of counterpoint and his startling, idiosyncratic understanding of harmonic relationships: the two combined resulting in great tension and drama.
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After this the reprise seems at first traditional but the composer throws in a few surprises along the way including a coda disturbing in its quietude. The second movement Larghetto is perhaps the heart of the sonata.
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An extended melody wends its way with intimations of almost religious piety, the harmonic progressions lending piquant touches that deny the listener common expectation until, settling once again in the home tonality of F major, the second theme is heard. The presentation of this theme pp. The development of these two themes seems almost an exercise in free fantasy, though the basic concept underlying it is clear: the composer juxtaposes duplet elements of the first theme with triplet elements of the second, exchanging them in various registers of the two instruments and recombining them, all with the utmost beauty of harmonization.
The reprise is brief and its quiet ending is almost a mirror of the gesture which ends the preceding movement. In his observations concerning the Allegretto finale, Erich Roeder warns against a tempo that might be too fast - on regular viola or viola alta - for the basically comfortable nature of the opening rondo theme. The theme is almost commonplace when it enters but then Draeseke's genial stamp takes over as passing notes and agogic displacements intrude and the theme undergoes chameleon like alterations. The form of the movement is extended rondo form, that is, rondo with elements of sonata allegro.
A second theme, more lyrical in expression, is introduced and given development. Erich Roeder finds the theme a relative of the melody of Draeseke's song " Abendreih'n ", Op. To hear them, click on each of the titles above. To purchase this CD please click on the link above. This short work for solo piano was composed for a special recital given on 11th July in St Mary's Church, Lydney, Gloucestershire, by pianist, Duncan Honeybourne, to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the death of Herbert Howells. Howells wrote of Andrew Downes in his report: 'In a quiet but strong way one of the most effective composers coming to me these days.
Herbert Howells was born and grew up in Lydney, Gloucestershoire.
Return to the top of the page. Prelude, Fanfare and Postlude for Organ Score. Sonata for Organ Score. Introduction and Allegro for Solo Organ Score. Sacred Mass for Solo Violin Score. All four pieces have unusual features about them Being familiar with the Mass, I found the varied themes fitted in nicely with what they intended to express.
Repetitions in the form of the Mass were all there. The whole Sonata was performed by these same artists on l lth May in Birmingham Cathedral. All four pieces have unusual features about them. The Sonata for Violin and Piano, op. Both have unusual inspirational backgrounds. In the Violin Sonata, this is Indian music with its ragas Indian music certainly comes through sensitively in the themes used by Downes and his clever developments of them. Both this piece and The God Marduk make attractive listening. The central slow movement is particularly delightful.
This work was composed for Russian violinist, Alla Sharova, for her concerts with pianist, Gillian Mayer. Rupert Marshall-Luck and Duncan Honeybourne performed this work as part of the event.
The God Marduk was an ancient Babylonian God. In the single movement that is 'The God Marduk' thematic unity and development are hugely impressive. The viola version was arranged by the composers' wife Cynthia, herself a violist. For me, it was the best piece on the CD. Rupert Marshell-Luck plays the viola with real attention to the original instrumentation. At the very end of the piece, he allows the final held note to go just the slightest bit off tune, exactly as a held note echoing on the horn would naturally do.
Pianist, Duncan Honeybourne Keith Bragg was accompanied by Judith Keaney. Contrabass Flute and Piano.
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Peter Sheridan playing the contrabass flute. To purchase the CD, click the link above. Clarinet and Piano. Meditations for Solo Trumpet Score. Subsequently performed as part of numerous student recitals at Birmingham Conservatoire, and by professional trumpeters in the UK. Paul's Church, Hockley, Birmingham, and broadcast on the 3rd February The trumpet soloist was Garry Page.
Sonatas for Clarinet (or Viola) and Piano, Op.120
Subsequently performed as part of numerous student recitals at Birmingham Conservatoire and by professional trumpeters in the UK. He knows the instrument so well, and what works and what doesn't.
He writes beautiful lyrical lines and contrasts them with complex rhythms and thematic ideas. To purchase the CDs, click on the link above. This work has been transcribed by Cynthia Downes for Viola and Piano. Violin, Horn and Piano. The three-movement work is thematically very tightly conceived And his writing for horn is truly splendid, challenging for the player, but at the same time gratifying for listener and performer. It starts off in a very meditative manner, always giving the instruments time to speak their piece before joining together in a rather passionate second movement.