|Variations des Folies d'Espagne||Pierre de La Garde (1717-179?)|
La Ninfea live in Bremen
the Follias were a mix from Corelli, Vivaldi, Bellinzani, Martin y Coll but also a lot of improvised and adapted variations.
Dance music, however, does not survive through choreographic sources alone, but often proves to be based on well-known songs. Prior to the recording, in a period of intensive cooperation between Dorothée Wortelboer, the musicologist Dirkjan Horringa and the Lacrimae Ensemble, the dances were analyzed, played and danced in order to achieve an optimal result.On the particular piece 'Improvisations on la Folia' is said at the same page:
We have no surviving 16th-century choreography for the Folia melody, which was widely known and popular for almost three centuries. Dancers may improvise, as musicians love to do, to the haunting little strain or simply to its bass.You do not have to be a musicologist or a great analyser of 16th Century dances to recognize instantly in 'improvisations on la Folia' the later Folia-theme which was introduced (ok, i make an exception for Falconieri) by Lully in 1672. The subtitle 'flowers of the 16th Century Italian Dance Music' is absolutely incorrect. I wonder what kind of dance is picked for this Baroque music pur sang and clearly intended for a listening audience the delicate way it is played. However the Folia theme (a nice blending of the Gallot and Ruiz de Ribayaz) sounds great on the Chitaronne.
Ther seventh variation differs from the other variations as a modern evolution from the other variations.
From the outset there were 12 variations and the last variation was called 'A la manière de Max Reger' which is left out of this registration and substituted
by the opening of the introducing sarabande by Händel.
Every variation can be tracked down to the name of a composer representing a specific style
Tema – Sir Händel
Prima Variazione – Signor Corelli
Seconda Variazione – Herr Pachelbel
l Terza Variazione – Der junge Bach
Quarta Variazione – Sweelincks Tanz
Quinta Variazione – Les tierces coulées de Couperin
Sesta Variazione – Kapellmeister Buxtehude
Settima Variazione – Ligoratti in 'durezze et ligature'
Ottava Variazione - Arpeggio del Signor Scarlatti
i Nona Variazione – Le baston de Lully
Decima Variazione – Duel Rameau-Rousseau
Undicesima Variazione – Fughetta finale
Tema – Haendel’s good-bye
There is no introduction, just a page with 'Performance Directions' ('Spielanweisungen') that quickly explains what those little encircled numbers mean (all different techniques that are not completely standard for recorder players - at least those like myself who are not too familiar with contemporary music. They include things like overblowing, singing while playing, chords, vibratos produced by finger or tongue movement and flutter-tonguing).
The sheet music
Duration: 7'42", 56 kB (incl. the Jota aragonesa)
Rhapsody Espagnole performed by Stephen Houg with sheet music
Poetry and pyrotechnics prove compatible bedfellows in Arrau’s performance of the Rhapsodie espagnole. The recording captures the pianist’s multi–dimensional timbre with remarkable fidelity for the period. Small cuts were necessary to prevent the work from spilling over to three sides.
Rhapsody Espagnole part 1 performed by Simon Barer(e)
Rhapsody Espagnole part 2 performed by Simon Barer(e)
Rhapsodie Espagnole (Folies d'Espagne et jota aragonesa, c.1863) Appropriated from Gilels, an adrenalin-racing Berman warhorse - from the early fifties to his US debut in Cleveland, 14 January 1976.
Rhapsody Espagnole performed by James Bonn
Liszt was both the first and the greatest virtuoso pianist to tour (in 1844-45) the Spanish peninsula. One work for piano that came from this period was the
Grosse Konzertfantasie uber Spanische Weisen of 1845. Couriously enough, this work was never printed during Liszt's lifetime. This work and the
Rhapsodie espagnole (Spanish Rhapsody) shared common thematic material but the Spanish Rhapsody was not composed until 1863 in Rome and
then published in 1867. Certainly the Iberian tour made impressions on Liszt although he stated in an undated letter to Felix von Lichnowsky written about September 1,
1845 that he never once heard the folies d'Espagne during the whole time he was there. See Bayreuther Blatter deutsche Zeitschrift im Geiste Richard Wagner,
XXX/1-3 (1907), 35: "As you know, (folies d'Espagne) is the title of a song perfectly familiar abroad, but one that I never heard while in Spain."
Nevertheless, the Spanish experience must have had some influence on the Spanish Rhapsody that consists of a set of free variations on two Spanish themes - -
La Folia and the Jota Aragonesa.
Opening with one of Liszt's finest cadenzas, the first part is a kind of slow passacaglia on La Folia. The second part features the Jota Aragonesa - - a brilliant contrast. The Jota is a waltz?like tune that was brought to Aragon in the 12th century by a Moor from Valencia. Accompanied by guitars, castanets, and triangles, it has remained one of the most popular dances of Northern Spain. The lyrical central section of the Jota is transformed to extraordinary effect in the final section. The separation of the stately Folies d'Espagne from the capering Jota makes the form of the Spanish Rhapsody very comprehensible even at first hearing.
The Spanish Rhapsody was composed in Rome in 1867 and recalls not only Spain's vitality and aplomb but also Liszt's glance or glitter period. So dramatically terminated twenty years earlier. The Rhapsody is a set of very free variations on the traditional Spanish melodies La Folia and the Jota Aragonesa. These are extensiveley ornamented and are framed by massive introductory flourishes and a no less grandiose conclusion
The Spanish Rhapsody has become one of Liszt's best-known compositions,
although it took some while to establish itself in the repertoire. Liszt told Lina
Ramann that he had written the piece in recollection of his Spanish tour whilst in
Rome in about 1863. The work was published in 1867 - subtitled Folies d'Espagne et
Jota aragonesa. Later it was often found published alongside the first fifteen
Hungarian Rhapsodies, which might have helped its popularity but contributes nothing
towards understanding it. The work is a great deal less rhapsodic than its Hungarian
cousins, and needs a certain elegant detachment in performance. Its nature is rather
staid and noble - even the coda is marked 'non troppo allegro' - and the opening
flourishes, however dramatic, recall the sound-world of the recently-composed Legende:
St. François d'Assise - La predication aux oiseaux.
Then the ensuing variations on La Folia form a passacaglia in C sharp minor. The last variation slips gently into D major for the delicate presentation of the jota, mostly in the upper register of the piano. One further theme, also heard as part of the jota in the Grand Fantasy provides the opportunity for a further change of key, and F major, A flat major, E major and E flat major all vie for attention before the dominant of D major finally established for a grand reprise of the jota, finally lead to the recall of La Folia, now in D major, for the conclusion.
The Spanish Rhapsody was written in 1863, based on a fantasy on Spanish Airs written by Liszt in 1845 for the occasion of his tour in Spain at the time. Liszt subtitled the Rhapsody 'Folies d'Espagna and Jota Aragonese'. The first part is a kind of Passacaglia on La Folia, familiar from Corelli and elsewhere while the brillant second half contains some of the same themes as his earlier 'Fantasy on Spanish Airs'.
The cosmopolitan vituoso that was Liszt spent his first period of apprenticeship in Vienna, appearing in public in the presence of Beethoven, among others. He went on to take an interest in folk music and folk dances from the whole of Europe, and these he used in many of his own compositions. Among these works are not only his well-known series of Hungarian Dances but also the Rhapsodie espagnole that he wrote in 1858. Here Liszt uses two very different traditional dances, a gravely solemn folia of Portuguese origins that is rhythmically related to a sarabande and a serenely animated jota. The result is a substantial piece, beginning with a broad cadenza, after which the two dances are introduced in turn. These two dances are then brought closer together by means of numerous variants and derivative motifs. In general, the work sets great store by virtuoso monumentality, a supreme example of salon music written for the piano.
When Llobet does dazzle us with the Tárrega School's arsenal of idiomatic guitar effects (tremelo, arpeggios, harmonics, left hand alone), he does it with style and elegance, as in 'Variaciones sobre un tema de Sor'. Here Llobet expands upon an old Folia melody, which he has taken from Sor's 'Folies d'Espagne', opus 15.
A favourite for centuries among European composers, the ancient theme of the folia inspired a number of works, including Fernando Sor's Variations Op. 15. Borrowing from this theme and the first two variations, Llobet adds eight more variations and a romantic 'Intermezzo' that display an ingenuity in modern harmonic technique with devices exploiting several technical aspects of the guitar, including left-hand only variation, harmonics and quick slurs.
The variations on a theme by Sor are a homage to the celebrated romantic guitarist Fernando Sor from who Llobet takes the beautiful Folia theme and two new variations, of which he adds eight new ones interrupted by an intermezzo with almost Schumann-like harmonies. This perfectly balanced work is characterized by it's virtuoso style and imagination while keeping completely in the style of it's time.
This set of 11 variations appears in a large manuscript by the Portuguese violinist Pedro Lopez Nogueira (Biblioteca National, Lisbon ). The manuscript is clearly intended for teaching violin. It contains 13 pieces with continuo (of which the Folias are number 5), 240 lessons or pedagogical exercises, 2 cadenzas, 24 preludes and fantasias in every key, and 12 arpeggio exercises. It probably dates from around 1720. A facsimile is available from Rhapsody Ensemble Editions, firstname.lastname@example.org, ISBN 0 9536577 0 2. The Folias begin with a variation; the theme is never stated in unadorned form. The bass line is different in every variation.
|Opening of Folias by Lopez Nogueira||by unknown source|
On the cover of the publicqation is mentioned in the German language '.Gedruckt mit Unterstützung des Längmanska kulturfondens'. On the last page is mentioned in tiny letters' "Skandia nodestik, København" probably the source of the original source.Bo Lundgren wrote in 1960 as an introduction to the publication:
Auf eine andere Quelle machte uns Nils Schiörring aufmerksam in
seiner Abhandlung "Det 16. og 17. Aarhundredes verdslige danske Visesang,
1-2, 1950". (1, S. 362-363). Es war hier ejn Tabulaturbuch in der Königlichen Bibliothek zu Kopenhagen, in dem sämtliche Stücke als "in tavolat. di Joh. Laurent" angegeben sind. Das Buch ist in braunes Leder gebunden und trägt die Stempelung "M. S..M. D." sowie die Jahreszahl ,,1688" . Nach einer ersten Seite mit "Concordanten" folgen 7 Tanzsätze, ein Präludium und ein Variationswerk (La Folia). Diese Stücke stehen in unserer Ausgabe am Anfang und tragen die Nummern 1-9. [...].
Bei den aufgefundenen und hier zum ersten Mal veröffentlichten Werken von Lorentz handelt es sich um Klavierwerke von der Art, wie sie im 17. Jahrhundert das Repertoir eines Klavierspielers bildeten, ganz unabhängig davon, ob ihm der organistenberuf als Ziel vorschwebte oder ob er das Klavierspiel nur zum eigenen Vergnügen betrieb, Dieses Repertoir bestand einmal aus freien Kompositionen wie Intonationen, Präludien, Toccaten und Fantasien und zum anderen aus Choralbearbeitungen
|Opening of La Folie d'Espagne by Johan Lorentz||by Bo Lundgren|
Sven-Ingvart Mikkelsen plays La Folie d'Espagne
Johan Lorentz was the son of an organist and composer of the same name (c.1580-1650), who had some links with Danmark - he is buried in St. Olai Church Helsingor. At the age of 19, Johan Lorentz the Younger at his father's request became organist of Vor Frue Kirke in Copenhagen, but left soon after for Italy where he studied for a year or so.
It is doubtful whether the few surving works ascribed to him really are from his pen. La Folie d'Espagne is one of the "great" melodies of music history, originally an old Spanish dance (the title means Spanish folly). It has been used by numerous composers right up to our time. Particularly famous examples are a violin sonata by Corelli, Liszt's Rapsodie Espagnol, and Rachmaninov's Variations on a Theme of Corelli, because Rachmaninov mistakenly believed that the melody that Corelli used in his sonata was composed by Corelli himself. But it is, in fact, the old Spanish dance he used for his variations. The melody also forms the basis of the minuet in Kuhlau's music for Elverhoj
Ludwig, who was introduced before his piece was performed, said that the "La Follia" melody he used was one of the earliest pieces of published western music and that publication was attributed to Jean-Baptiste Lully. Ludwig mentioned after the concert that he enjoyed the experience of working with the students. "La Follia for String Orchestra" had some contemporary elements and was tailored with the young musicians in mind so the resulting performance was very good.
Air des hautbois arranged for orchestra (just think there are only oboes and percussion)
Duration: 1'50", 07 kB.
|Opening of Lully's Air des Hautbois||by unknown source|
André Philidor's music does not seek to be inventive, aiming instead to be appropriate to the circumstance; it reflects in form and style the influence of Lully. In Les Folies d'Espagne written in collaboration with Lully on the fashionable air of La Folia which inspired so many composers, the eight-bar ostinato theme of adjacent notes is taken up in six couplets, or variations, the fourth and fifth including a nimble diminution for bassoons
"The Marche du régiment du roi of 1670 appears on this recording because it too was played by the Musketeers, as Philidor himself explains in the 1705 manuscript: "When the king's Regiment was founded it was the French March that was sounded but the officers of the aforesaid regiment who had been drawn from the Musketeers asked the King for the side-drums to beat the March of the Musketeers. When this request was granted, they sounded the above march [Marche du régiment du roi] then struck up the March of the Musketeers once more, as is still done today." This march is accompanied, with the same side-drum rhythm (batterie), by the variations on Les folies d’Espagne (La folia) which Louis XIV commissioned Lully to write in 1672, an order the king transmitted to Philidor at Saint-Germain-en Laye.
The classe de TLA du Lycée Jeanne d'Arc de Rouen
You're missing one or more?
Please e-mail your contribution to
and it will be added to the inventory
best viewed at 800 x 600