Duration: 6'41" direct link to YouTube
My ukulele version is more or les based on Marin Marais version. Actualy I did make the first version for the mandolin but since I
became an ukulele adept I found out that it sounds even nicer on the
ukulele some 7 month ago! I was already familiar with Gaspar Sanz &
Francois Lecocq versions for guitar.
It is a home made recording but I play those variations in public as well
Duration: 0'50", 5 kB.
Duration: 11'51", 46 kB.
The manuscript "Dissertazioni del Sg. Francesco Veracini sopra l'opera quinta del Corelli" in the Biblioteca Comunale in Bologna (the late Liceo musicale) does not contain - as occasionally presumed - ornamentations of the famous sonatas by Corelli but a new version of them. The fugal movements especially have been revised to such a degree that they could be described as new compositions. Like similar works by Bach, they are the expression of a profound and critical mind and in their thoroughness without comparison in the music of the baroque.
The sheet music Air des folies d'Espagne
Nils Vigeland wrote La Folia Variants in 1996 for guitarist Anton Machleder, who never played it. I subsequently played the premiere in October 2002 at the Manhattan School of Music. The piece is in three movements, Cadenza-Sonata-Dances. It is based on the rhythm- quarter-dotted quarter-eighth. Truthfully, the folia theme is not really discernible in 90% of the piece, it is more taken as material to jump off from. It is not published at this point, nor it is it recorded, though I plan to release the first recording in Fall 2003. I don't know if Vigeland plans on publishing the score. The piece is approx. 12 minutes long, and 16 pages. The piece starts in "tonic". I include the quotation marks since it is not explicitly in any key per se, but to the extent that it is, it starts on tonic harmony. So if it were in D minor, it would start melodically d-d--d, c#-c#---, d-d--d, e-e--. The appearances of the actual theme are masked but when they do appear, this is the form they appear in.
Duration: 1'19", 1272 kB. (128KB/s, 44100 Hz)
Nils Vigeland's La Folia Variants basks in the richness
of sonority on the guitar. The first movement "Cadenza" uses
rhythm to evoke the flow of speech, as repeated bell-like harmonics
ebb and flow. "Sonata" opens with lush chords, and builds
patiently to a prolonged climax over a pedal point, before returning
to the intimacy of the opening. "Dances" is a virtuosic tour
de force of three dance sections, each more fleet than its predecessor.
The centuries old folia theme appears frequently throughout the work,
sometimes buried in dense textures, and sometimes cloaked in unexpected
The composer writes, "La Folia Variants" takes more as a point of departure rather than a foundation the famous tune, subject of innumerable pieces. Not being a guitarist, my intrigue with the instrument is in the difference in resonance between notes that are harmonically powerful in the tuning of the six strings and those which are not. This, more than anything else, led me through the composition of the piece."
Il en court tant de couplets (de variations), dont tous les
concerts retentissent que je ne pourois que rebattre les folies des autres
or in English:
One will certainly not come across any more Folies d'Espagne. So many strains of them abound, cluttering up all the concerts, that I should only be repeating the follies of others.
In the Ms. Rés 1106, the source for his recording,
the name of the composer is indeed missing. Although, when you look at the
charasteristics of this composition some of the variations might have been
done by de Visée. The interpretation of the performance is in some
variations played in the spirit of de Visée. The Paris manuscript Vm
6265 has only 4 variations, but Rés 1106 has 6 variations including
the last strumming variation. That final variation is written in thick chords
only, but if de Visée (he was a guitarplayer too) played it, he surely
used the strumming technique for it.
Mister Satoh suggested that one of the reasons for the de Visée not to sign the piece could have been that he was afraid that his composition was compared with other folia-masterpieces. For T. Satoh it isn't that important who wrote the piece, because La Folia was public domain, borrowed and adapted by many composers in that era. De Visée might be regarded as the exponent of all French Theorbo players at the end of the 17th century and since the piece was written during his lifetime, for a common audience it does appeal more to attribute it to de Visée than to some anonymous composer, except perhaps for some musicologists.
|Theme by Anonymous for Theorbe (c.1690)||collected by Richard Hudson|
Duration: 4'02" direct link to YouTube
6 variations sur les Folies d'Espagne: French
There is a double reference made to Spain here: first by the theme and variations form and then by the folía. The probable Portuguese origin of this dance was long since forgotten. This late example of the French school of lute music shows it at its best and also it demionstrates what was to become the style of the 18th century French school of harpsichordists among whom the Couperin and Rameau.
Margarita Mónica Viso Soto
I started the composition in 1999 but it was not finished right away. Eventually the composition (the final one or two pages) was finished only 8 years later. In 2007 I had the feeling that I had to complete the composition.
Every "Diferencia" (variation) is a tribute to one of the great composers of music. I don't remember every one: Cabezón and others like Händel, Corelli, Couperin, Beethoven, Bellini and Rachmáninov. The last diferencia was not associated with a particular composer and can be filled in by the listener.
The reason to choose the Folía theme is that I would like to make an appropriate composition for the occasion that a collegue pianist retired: a close friend of mine. She is Catalanian and I am Galician. Then I needed some musical theme that is common ground for the both of us, which was not an easy task. Las folías de España is a magnificent theme and I found it perfect for my project.
The performer in the YouTube film Antonio Queija is a great pianist.
Duration: 9'40" direct link to YouTube
Folia: In 1611 Covarrubias Horozco explained that the
name 'folia', meaning 'mad' or 'emty-headed', was appropriate because
the dance was so fast and noisy that the dancers seemed out of their
The source that have come down to us do not enable us to determine wheter the 'folia' is of European or South American origin. The name first appeared in Portugal in the fifteenth century in connection with singing and dancing, and it soon spread to Spain. But the 'folia' may have been one of the first dances imported into Portugal from the New World. Portuguese 'folia' texts appear in the works of Gil Vincente (written between c1503 and c1529), and Spanish texts in the 'Recopilación en metro' by Diego Sanchez de Badajoz (published posthumously in 1544).
In the seventeenth century the 'folia' was popular in Spain as a sung dance, accompanied by the five-course guitar and 'sonajas' (metal discs attached to a wooden ring). In early seventeenth-century Italy many 'folias' were written in 'alfabeto' notation for the guitar. These pieces call for rhythmic improvisation from the guitarist.
In the eighteenth century the instrumental 'folia' became a noble, courtly theme. Its extraordinary, timeless harmony served as a basis for virtuoso compositions in Italy and France.
'La Follia' has proven to be one of the most popular and enduring harmonic progressions from the Renaissance and Baroque period. Throughout history 'La Follia' has been used by many great composers including Corelli and Vivaldi, right through to Liszt and Rachmaninoff. This CD contains a wide selection of 'La Follia' variations by Baroque composers, including one of the most well known settings, by Corelli, 'La Follia' from Sonata Op 5, No 12. This work is Corelli at his best, displaying an endless imagination through a succession of variations in ever changing moods and metres. Likewise the setting by Vitali also featured, contains a wealth of variation and invention
A live performance of La Petite Bande with Sigiswald Kuijken playing the Violoncello da Spalla
Duration: 0'45", 03 kB.
|Theme of La Follia in arr. for two recorders and b.c.||arrangement Martin Nitz, 1987|
His first published work was, as might be expected for strings, a set of twelve 'Suonate da camera a tre' (c. 1705), which begs comparison with Corelli's opus 5 set of solo sonatas, published five years earlier, because both sets end with variations on the popular bass pattern known as 'La Folia'. Vivaldi's Trio Sonata in D minor 'La Folia' RV 63 includes maximum virtuoso figuration for both violins and continuo, with occasional punctuation in the form of slower variations - an Adagio with some very Corellian suspensions, a Larghetto which gives all its attention to the first violin, and a Siciliano.
It's a noble tradition, as illustrated by the inclusion of both Bach's "Concerto in A minor for Four Harpsichords", and Vivaldi's "Concerto in B minor for Four Violins" on which it was based. But the showstopper is the vivid "La Folia": I love the strings' halting introductory bars and the way the ensemble picks up speed, building to dizzying whirls evocative of the Moorish dance it's named after.Julie Amacher wrote for the Minnesota Public Radio November 8, 2011:
.Jeannette Sorrell finds Vivaldi's rhythms and harmonies exhilarating. She proves this in her own arrangements of two of Vivaldi's concertos, the first of which opens this new recording. "La Folia" (which can be translated as "madness") is a dramatic Portuguese dance with Moorish influences. Legend has it that Portuguese girls would collapse after completing this frenzied dance which is full of seduction and dramatic courtship. The melody went on to catch the attention of many composers, including Vivaldi. Sorrell's arrangement turns his original trio sonata into a concerto grosso so the entire ensemble can join in "madness."
For the generation after Corelli, the trio sonata became the genre in which young composers showed their skill in simultaneously shaping melodies and weaving counterpoint. Thus just after Antonio Vivaldi was ordained a priest and just before he became maestro di violino at the Pietà in Venice he published his first work, a collection of 12 sonatas for two violins and basso continuo. The last of these sonatas is a set of variations on La Follia, a popular theme of the day. It is founded on a sequence of four chords, in the manner of a chaconne. Vivaldi may not have been just copying Corelli who, in his opus 5, had also published variations on this theme; Vivaldi may implicitly have been claiming at the beginning of his career that he was Corelli's equal.
Live concert of the ensemble with Borysov and Rubanova violin
These guys play very active, aggressive, energetic - feverish - way, which I greatly like. I have a number of recordings of the Vivaldi variations, and this is clearly my favourite. First time I heard it in concert, I was rather shocked about it, and definitely needed a drink. That is not meant in a negative way! Highly recommended!
Live concert of the ensemble
Duration: 1'48", 1.7 Mb. (128kB/s, 44100 Hz)
Vivaldi's Folia, op 1 No 12 is a typical example of a form of variations from the 18th Century Contrary to those of the 17th Century (Falconieri) these variations are distinctly different, even though they are sometimes linked, following on from one another. The different tempi and the characters follow each other with varying feelings of tenderness, vivacity and virtuosity to the delight of the instrumentalists.
Chapter 11: Carnival
Carnival, the four weeks leading up to Shrove Tuesday and, formerly, to the traditional limitations of Lent, was once a season of relaxation, a historical custom now revived, even in the snow in St. Mark's Square.
Music Vivaldi: Trio Sonata 'La follia'
La follia or les folies d'Espagne was once the most popular dance tunes of the Baroque period, serving composer after composer as a basis for imaginative variations. For Corelli it provided material for a violin sonata, while even in the twentieth century Rachmaninov had recourse to the same theme in a virtuoso work for solo piano.
Ensemble Oni Wytars Live 18 December 2013 in Bielefeld
Nous arrivons finalement au <<joker du jeu de cartes>> : une longue série de variations sur mélodie et la basse de La Folia constitue l'intégration de la Sonate 12. Son prototype est évidemment la Folia de Corelli, qui conclut les sonates pour violon opus 5 (de 1700) de compositeur romain. L'oevre de Corelli provoqua de nombreuses imitations, mais il semble bien que Vivaldi ait consulté directement l'original, à en juger par les nombreux parallélismes dans le dessin et le style des mouvements individuals. Dans un sens, la version de Corelli est la plus sophistiquée des deux, particulièrement pour la fluidité de sa musique. Mais Vivaldi fait bon usage du violon supplémentaire pour produire certains effets de contrepoint et de dialogue absents dans le discourse musical du modèle. Il est intéressant de souligner la façon dont Corelli prête une attention spéciale à la linéarité, ou l'saspect <<horizontale>> de la musique, tandis que le jeune Vivaldi privilégie l'harmonie, la <<verticalité>> en produisant un effet plus rude mais aussi plus passioné. Vivaldi continua à écrire des series de variations, certaines très visionaries dans leur organisation soignée et logique, mais aucune n'atteint le niveau de cette Follia (de nouveau , Vivaldi <<vénitianisé>> Lórthographie!). Il s'agit vraiment d'un acte extraordinaire d'auto-affirmation d'un compositeur jeune et ambitieux.
Göteborg Baroque Live August 18, 2012 in Skara, Sweden
With the development of the virtuosic repertoire for the violin at the turn of the century it was only natural that the Folia should be included in it. In 1700 the great Arcangelo Corelli (1653-1713) used it as the basis for a series of exceedingly virtuosic variations with which he concluded his most influential collection of solo sonatas for violin and continuo, the famous Op. 5, the contents of which are known to have circulated in manuscript for more than a decade prior to this printing. In 1704 one of the most representative composers of violin music of the German and Dutch school, Henricus Albicastro, an artistic pseudonym of Johann Heinrich von Weissenburg (ca. 1660 -ca. 1730), published a sonata "La Follia", which displays a clear Corellian influence in its virtuosic writing. And it was not by accident that a year later, in 1705, the young Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741) also chose to conclude a decisive publication in which he placed the highest hopes for the future of his artistic career, his Op. 1 collection of trio-sonatas, with yet another magnificent set of Folia variations.
Probably derived from a Portuguese Folksong, this theme has formed the basis of instrumental and vocal variations since the late 16th century. By following Corelli's celebrated set of 1700 with its own just five years later, Vivaldi was establishing his position in a competitive game. 'Vivaldi's variations are redically different', Hope observes. 'They have a charmless playfulness in the way the violins 'toss the ball to and fro', and the slower, more poetic variations are deeply moving. Each one has its own personality, and its own language'.
Every Baroque composer worth his salt wrote a version of Les Folies D'Espagne, or La Folli´a or some variant of Folly. The ground bass is a repeated pattern which allows for any number of deviations to occur, thus creating variations, some of which can be truly crazy. I FURIOSI has chosen to record the adaptations by Antonio Vivaldi and Andrea Falconieri.
Sonatori de la Gioiosa Marca at You Tube
Live performance of Il Giardino Armonico in Tilburg
The other piece chosen for this recording from Vivaldi's Opus 1 the more famous La Follia on the other hand, is a sonata in three parts in the form of theme and variations. Its thematic material is clearly very similar to that used by Corelli in the homonymous Sonata for Violin and Bass from his Opus V (both sonatas being composed on the same ground bass), except that Vivaldi's version is pervaded by a sense of tension and excitement not found in Corelli's work. In paying hommage to this very famous work by the Romagna born composer. Vivaldi, in fact, brings a nervousness to the ancient Iberian theme of La Follia through an obsessive journey which has little time for lyrical epissdes and leads to a series of final variations which are similar to Corelli's version but more pounding, hyperbolic and impatient
Vivaldi composed a Trio Sonata in D Minor for two violins and basso continuo. It was the twelfth from his Opus 1, published' in 1705 in Venice. Here, we find that the Folias are embellished by the genius of the red-haired priest at the peak of his art. Virtuosity, tenderness, passion and nostalgia follow in close succession, leaving us quite breathless.
Live performance in the Wallfahrtskirche Mariae Krönung, Oberried
His Folia was one of his very earliest works. Published in 1703 in Venice it brings his first printed collection to a close, paying an obvious tribute to Corelli's opera cinque. In spite of his youth, it already attests, with its 19 variations on this Iberian dance, to the rhythmic richness, variety an lyricism, simplicity and originality and inexhaustible verve of one of music's greatest geniuses.
The Purcell Quartet plays all variations by Antonio Vivaldi
Follía by Voices of Music
and in a choreography by Carlos Fittante
In 1705, eager to make his mark as a composer of both opera and instrumental music, the young Vivaldi published his first set of twelve trio sonatas as Opus 1. The last sonata, which is a highly virtuosic set of variations on the "La Follia" dance pattern (titled only "Follia" in the print), is one of his most famous works; Vivaldi takes Corelli's variations on the same theme-and-bass pattern from Corelli's Opus 5 (1700), which was already a famous work, and adds figuration of even greater complexity.
A live performance of the Follia scene by Ensemble Matheus and reconstructor Jean-Christophe Spinosi
Duration: 0'39", 622 kB. (128KB/s, 44100 Hz)
Vivaldi actually titled the opera 'Orlando'. 'Orlando
Furioso' was the name of an earlier opera with music by G. A. Ristori
and a libretto by Grazio Braccioli. Vivaldi made modifications to that
opera in 1714, and in 1727 wrote completely new music to Braccioli's
libretto, which is why Scimone calls it 'Orlando Furioso'.
The last lines are directed to the sorceress Alcina. The 6 'la's are sung to the Folia tune, just making it into the 3rd measure. This snippet can be found about .9 inch (2.3 cm) from the end of side 5 of the recording.
In Act 3, Scene 4, Orlando says this in his madness (English translation by Edward Houghton):
|Italian text||English translation|
| All'invito gentil che Amor le fa
Madame la Crudelta
Con guardo torvo e minaccioso aspetto
Disse 'Petit fripon; je ne veux pas!'
Ed il rigor, presa belta pre mano
Lascio con passo grave e ciera brutta
Il mio povero amore e bocca asciutta.
Deh, appaghi ella il mio amor
Danziam, Signora, la follia d'Orlando.
La la la la la la (in atto di danzare)
| I Solisti Veneti
To the kind invitation which love gave
With sullen glance and threatening look,
Said: 'Petit fripon; je ne veux pas!'
And Monsieur Severity, taking my beauty by the hand,
With solemn steps and an ugly face,
Left my poor love with a dry mouth.
Ah, this woman here may satisfy my love by
dancing with me.
Let us dance, madam, the folly of Orlando.
Play ! Play!
La la la la la la (dancing)
| Ensemble Matheus|
To the gracious invitation of love
with grim gaze, and threatening expression
said " Little rogue, I shan't"
and Severity, taking beauty by the hand,
with grave step and ugly expression
left my love unrequited.
Ah, her satisfy my love
in a dance.
Let us dance, my lady, Orlando's "follia".
Play ! Play!
(dancing) La la la ra la
Duration: 0'53", 836 kB. (128KB/s, 44100 Hz)
Duration: 0'53", 836 kB. (128KB/s, 44100 Hz)
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