Prelude and Csárdás

Solo for violin and orchestra

Folklore Ungarian by Joan Grífols

Virtuosic two-movement piece displaying the solo violin with chamber orchestra.


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This composition is truly a prelude and czardas, in the same way as a toccata and fugue. The prelude, being in quasi-perpetual motion, is, in that sense, the toccata. Earlier, this composition was called Daniel II, but because the name seemed redundant and could be confused with the earlier Varia Daniel, I dropped it in favour of the more semantic title Prelude and Csárdás.



Before making this composition, I had often contemplated creating a csárdás. Indeed, since quite early in my learning the violin, I had become familiar with the score of the very famous Csárdás for violin and piano by Vittorio Monti. I told myself that if many people enjoy his composition, it would be profitable to make one of the same kind. I therefore consulted our Encyclopædia Britannica to find out what could be known about that form of music.

Later, I decided to make it a composition for my friend Daniel. I therefore began by the lassu (Andante Maestoso), of which the composition method was somewhat unusual:

I wished, for the lassu, to create a soft and melodic entry for the entry of the violin. I therefore wrote, out of my first inspiration, a line for the cello, containing an element of danse and a fragment of melody. After further consideration, I found that beautiful, but not sufficient. I therefore added a line for the clarinet, which I though would then carry the melody: false! I would end up creating a new line for the flute, that one finally being beautiful and satisfying.

To introduce the csárdás, I chose a theme invented earlier through a creative spinoff for the Various Airs for violin. That then became the theme of the ad perpetuum of the first movement. That perpetual movement is in reality an interrupted flow, since it stops in its center for a short Moderato, before starting again, on a new tone which makes these three parts—the Vivace of the beginning, the Moderato which follows, and the Vivace (or A tempo) of the end—inseperable.

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