From the beginning of the 18th century theterm concerto was used to indicate a compositionfor one solo instrumentperformingwith orchestral accompaniment. Initially it was in four movements(slow, fast, slow, fast), then the Vivaldi-style, in three movements(fast, slow, fast), prevailed. Virtuoso violinists started to write concertos fortheir own instrument, therefore we have many violin concertos as theviolin had become the most prominent instrument.
Here too, we consider the broader meaning of the term concerto and include other worksfeaturing the viola in a solo, concertante role withorchestra.Among these, there is one of the most wonderful works ever written: Mozart Sinfonia Concertante for violin,viola and orchestra. There are more:
From the Romantic era, there are no compositions thatcan be called real concertos for viola and orchestra. in fact, theviolin was the undisputed protagonist of the musical scene, togetherwith the piano. However, there are some very good works with the violain a concertante role with orchestra.
From the beginning of 20th century many composers start towrite more violacompositiones including concertos, especially thanks to viola champions LionelTertisfirst and William Primrose later. Thanks to them the viola has becomeaccepted as a solo instrument at the same level of violin and celloand now it's normal for composers to write concertos for viola. The two most famous ones are:
December 18, 2006 at 05:39 AM · Ok, so maybe I am a little hard on myself. But after being frustrated with the amount of ambiguity in many graded repertoire lists and hearing so many music teachers, professors, and students complain, I have taken it upon myself to create my own graded repertoire (with help from many sources). The criteria for each level is not specific, as that would mean 110 different analyses of each work. However, I have taken into consideration the technique and musicality required to play the pieces (bow control, dexerity, vibrato, flexibility, tone quality, and tempo among other things). For this reason, the Paganini concertos are not higher in level than other, technically easier pieces (such as Barber and Beethoven) for the reason that Barber and Beethoven require more insight and knowledge to play. Tonality is also taken into account. The levels range from 1-13+, 1 being the easiest and + being disgusting. Please feel free to comment, inquire, reject, or add (or some other verb) to this list. I am not perfect, so if I have missed something important, misspelled something, or misjudged a piece, please let me know. Please keep in mind, these are pieces for solo violin and orchestra.
December 19, 2006 at 02:50 AM · I have not studied all of the Kreisler pieces in depth. I did mention above that these are somewhat standard concertante works for violin. The Bach S&P are very varied in difficulty. My next idea with the list is to include the solo violin repertoire (as it is not as large as the violin and piano repertoire). I am working hard on my list, but I have 5 AP classes, 2 instruments, swim team, boy scouts, and like 5 clubs to tend to, so this list is what I do in my spare time (yay geeks!!!). In response to the question about order, this is not a method by any means. It is simply my answer to "What can I play next?" or "I need to find something to play at ___ level, soon." I would not suggest learning the pieces in the order I have presented, as I am in no way a pedagogue, but based on opinions collected, I have ranked the pieces based on overall difficulty. For example, the first two movements of the Barber might make it a level 9, however, the third movement is blisteringly difficult. I am going by the assumption that people who start a piece will play the WHOLE piece (including the Intermezzo in Symphonie Espagnol, my favorite movement). These are also subject ot some of my personal experiences. I mentioned before that I can not play fast arpeggios; I failed to mention that beyond two flats, I am lost in terms of key signature (strangely, I can play pieces with all seven sharps OvO^?). That is one reason why Scottish Fantasy and Poeme are higher on the list (not to mention the technique and tone/dynamic control). Besides, if you think about it, no one in their right mind learns all six of Paganini's concertos in a row (if you notice, the list is alphabetical so as not to offend anyone within particular levels).
Kevin, I misplaced the Valse-Scherzo. It should have been in level 10. As for the Paganini concertos, technically, I agree, but musically, I do not. See the revised list. I moved them up. And for the Schubert Fantasy, I saw a performance of it with orchestra. All of the pieces on this list go: w/ orchestra --> w/ piano, or vice-versa. I felt the need to include them, seeing as the list for violin and piano will take a very long time.
December 24, 2006 at 08:12 PM · Anne, I could actually use imput similar to that. I never studied the most basic of violin repertoire, so I lack greatg knowledge in that area. If you or anyone else could help me place the student concertos, that would be great.
But still, lists like this are a great help to chose repertoire for you and your students! I haven't played a quarter of it, but I know almost all from listening to competitions and stuff. We violinists have a good time chosing from that rich repertoire. And this is as we all know not even the "complete" list of concertos and etudes.
-concerto-in-c-major-op-48-mc0002357654 and the next line in Sassmannshaus's graded repertoire list mentions a concerto by him with no details, so it's probably referring to the same one (he only published one violin concerto).
Prokofiev began composing his First Violin Concerto in 1915. He was very fond of the opening theme, but was busy working on his opera, The Gambler. He regretted not having more time to work on the Concerto's "pensive opening." When he got back to it, he intended to compose a "concertino" for violin and orchestra, but the piece grew into a three-movement concerto. As musicologist and Prokofiev scholar Israel Nestyev has noted, Prokofiev consulted Polish violinist Paul Kochanski while writing the violin part. Kochanski advised him on bow markings and other technical details, and was supposed to have been the soloist at the premiere, planned for November of 1917. The piano score of the work was completed in the summer of 1917, but because of the revolution in Russia, the Concerto did not receive its first performance until 1922, in Paris.
Instead of the usual fast-slow-fast concerto structure, Prokofiev's outer movements are slow, while the middle movement is a fast scherzo. The order of the Concerto's movements is not the only unusual aspect of this violin concerto: the role of the solo violin is also atypical. While the violin dominates the piece, it is not set dramatically against the orchestra; instead, as Russian music critic I. Yampolsky wrote, the violin is "the first among equals," dominant but integrated into the orchestral texture.
The Bruch violin concerto owes a debt to that of Mendelssohn, but the debt is purely structural. From Mendelssohn, Bruch learned to color his first movement with the minor key, to bring in the soloist in the first few measures of the piece, and to link the three movements together. 2b1af7f3a8