44 Duos for Two Violins

Last updated

44 Duos for Two Violins (sometimes also entitled 44 Duets), Sz. 98, BB 104 is a series of duets composed in 1931 by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók.



Béla Bartók did not intend this work to be played in performances, but rather to be useful as a work for young students. The work was commissioned by Erich Doflein, a German violinist and teacher, who asked Bartók if he would arrange some of the pieces from the For Children series. [1] He composed other works in this period that were meant to be pedagogical, such as Mikrokosmos. This intention for educative works was exploited by the fact that he was a teacher himself, then he chose to write works for his pupils to play. Nevertheless, all songs and dances included in this series are based on folk music from many Eastern Europe countries, but harmonic and rhythmic freedom is evident throughout the whole piece.

In 1936, Bartók arranged 6 of these duos for piano, under the title Petite Suite .


This work is divided in four books, and the series of pieces advances in difficulty. The first and the second book should suit a student with a basic level, while the third book would be for an intermediate level, and the fourth book for an advanced level.

Book I

  1. Párosíto (Teasing Song)
  2. Kalamajkó (Maypole Dance)
  3. Menuetto
  4. Szentivánéji (Midsummer Night Song)
  5. Tót nóta (Slovakian Song) [1]
  6. Magyar nóta (Hungarian Song) [1]
  7. Oláh nóta (Wallachian Song)
  8. Tót nóta (Slovakian Song) [2]
  9. Játék (Play Song)
  10. Rutén nóta (Ruthenian Song)
  11. Gyermekrengetéskor (Cradle Song)
  12. Szénagyűjtéskor (Hay Song)
  13. Lakodalmas (Wedding Song)
  14. Párnás tánc (Pillow Dance)

Book II

  1. Katonanóta (Soldiers' Song)
  2. Burleszk (Burlesque)
  3. Menetelő nóta (Hungarian March) [1]
  4. Menetelő nóta (Hungarian March) [2]
  5. Mese (Fairy Tale)
  6. Dal (A Rhythm Song)
  7. Újévköszöntő (New Year's Greeting) [1]
  8. Szunyogtánc (Mosquito Dance)
  9. Mennyasszonybúcsútató (Bride's Farewell)
  10. Tréfás nóta (Comic Song)
  11. Magyar nóta (Hungarian Song) [2]

Book III

  1. "Ugyan édes komámasszony..." (Teasing Song)
  2. Sánta-tánc (Limping Dance)
  3. Bánkódás (Sorrow)
  4. Újévköszöntő (New Year's Greeting) [2]
  5. Újévköszöntő (New Year's Greeting) [3]
  6. Újévköszöntő (New Year's Greeting) [4]
  7. Máramarosi tánc (Dance from Máramaros)
  8. Ara táskor (Harvest Song)
  9. Számláló nóta (Enumerating Song)
  10. Rutén kolomejka (Ruthenian Kolomejka)
  11. Szól a duda (Bagpipes)
    1. A 36 Sz. Változata (Variant of No. 36)

Book IV

  1. Preludium és kanon (Prelude and Canon)
  2. Forgatós (Romanian Whirling Dance)
  3. Szerb tánc (Serbian Dance)
  4. Oláh tánc (Wallachian Dance)
  5. Scherzo
  6. Arab dal (Arabian Dance)
  7. Pizzicato
  8. "Erdélyi" tánc (Transylvanian Dance)

Dissonant harmonies are present throughout the whole piece, but it is not until the eleventh piece that polytonality is introduced. This work is specially well known for its rhythm, its dissonances, its canons and inversions, and its variety in using the whole gamut of the violin. [2]

Related Research Articles

Béla Bartók Hungarian composer and pianist

Béla Viktor János Bartók was a Hungarian composer, pianist, and ethnomusicologist. He is considered one of the most important composers of the 20th century; he and Franz Liszt are regarded as Hungary's greatest composers. Through his collection and analytical study of folk music, he was one of the founders of comparative musicology, which later became ethnomusicology.

Concerto for Orchestra (Bartók)

The Concerto for Orchestra, Sz. 116, BB 123, is a five-movement orchestral work composed by Béla Bartók in 1943. It is one of his best-known, most popular, and most accessible works.

Suzuki method Music teaching method

The Suzuki method is a music curriculum and teaching philosophy dating from the mid-20th century, created by Japanese violinist and pedagogue Shinichi Suzuki (1898–1998). The method aims to create an environment for learning music which parallels the linguistic environment of acquiring a native language. Suzuki believed that this environment would also help to foster good moral character.

Joseph Szigeti Violinist

Joseph Szigeti was a Hungarian violinist.

Moritz Moszkowski German composer, pianist and teacher

Moritz Moszkowski was a German composer, pianist, and teacher of Polish-Jewish descent. His brother Alexander Moszkowski was a famous writer and satirist in Berlin.

Tibor Serly

Tibor Serly was a Hungarian violist, violinist and composer.

A clarinet-violin-piano trio is a standardized chamber musical ensemble made up of one clarinet, one violin, and one piano participating in relatively equal roles, or the name of a piece written for such a group.

The Sonata for Solo Violin Sz. 117, BB 124, is a sonata for unaccompanied violin composed by Béla Bartók. It was premiered by Yehudi Menuhin, to whom it was dedicated, in New York on 26 November 1944.

Allegro barbaro, BB 63, composed in 1911, is one of Béla Bartók's most famous and frequently performed solo piano pieces. The composition is typical of Bartók's style, utilizing folk elements. The work combines Hungarian and Romanian scales; Hungarian peasant music is based on the pentatonic scale, while Romanian music is largely chromatic.

Contrasts is a 1938 composition scored for clarinet-violin-piano trio by Béla Bartók (1881–1945). It is based on Hungarian and Romanian dance melodies and has three movements with a combined duration of 17–20 minutes. Bartók wrote the work in response to a letter from violinist Joseph Szigeti, although it was officially commissioned by clarinetist Benny Goodman.

Endre Szervánszky was a Hungarian composer.

<i>Out of Doors</i> (Bartók) Five pieces for piano by Béla Bartók

Out of Doors is a set of five piano solo pieces, Sz. 81, BB 89, written by Béla Bartók in 1926. Out of Doors is among the very few instrumental compositions by Bartók with programmatic titles.

Kossuth, Sz. 21, BB. 31, DD. 75a is a symphonic poem composed by Béla Bartók inspired by the Hungarian politician Lajos Kossuth.

Divertimento for String Orchestra Sz.113 BB.118 is a three-movement work composed by Béla Bartók in 1939, scored for full orchestral strings. Paul Sacher, a Swiss conductor, patron, impresario, and the founder of the chamber orchestra Basler Kammerorchester, commissioned Bartók to compose the Divertimento, which is now known to be the pair's last collaborative work.

The Suite, Op. 14, Sz. 62, BB 70 is a piece for solo piano written by Béla Bartók. It was written in February 1916, published in 1918, and debuted by the composer on April 21, 1919, in Budapest. The Suite is one of Bartók's most significant works for piano, only comparable with his 1926 Piano Sonata. Though much of Bartók's work makes frequent use of Eastern European folk music, this suite is one of the few pieces without melodies of folk origin. However, Romanian, Arabic, and North African rhythmic influences can still be found in some movements. Originally intending the suite to be a five-movement work, Bartók later decided against the idea and discarded the second movement, the Andante, which was published only posthumously in the October 1955 issue of Új Zenei Szemle.

Ditta Pásztory-Bartók was a Hungarian pianist and the second wife of the composer Béla Bartók. She was the dedicatee of a number of his works, including Out of Doors and the Third Piano Concerto.

Andrey Kasparov

Andrey Rafailovich Kasparov is an Armenian-American pianist, composer, and professor, who holds both American and Russian citizenship.

Ten Easy Pieces, Sz. 39, BB 51 is a collection of short pieces for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was composed in 1908.

<i>Nine Little Piano Pieces</i> Hungarian piano composition

Nine Little Piano Pieces, Sz. 82, BB 90 is a collection of short pieces for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was completed in 1926.


  1. "Information about the work hosted at allmusic.com". Alexander Carpenter. Retrieved July 13, 2011.
  2. "Booklet from 8.550868 in the Naxos Records catalogue" . Retrieved July 13, 2011.