Romanian Folk Dances (Romanian : Dansuri populare românești, pronounced [ˈdansuri popuˈlare romɨˈneʃti] ), (Hungarian : Román népi táncok, pronounced [ˈromaːn ˈneːpi ˈtaːnt͡sok] ), Sz. 56, BB 68 is a suite of six short piano pieces composed by Béla Bartók in 1915. He later orchestrated it for small ensemble in 1917 as Sz. 68, BB 76.
It is based on seven Romanian tunes from Transylvania, originally played on fiddle or shepherd's flute. The original name for the piece was titled Romanian Folk Dances from Hungary (Hungarian: Magyarországi román népi táncok, pronounced [ˈmɒɟɒrorsaːɡi ˈromaːn ˈneːpi ˈtaːnt͡sok] ) but was later changed by Bartók when Transylvania became part of Romania in 1920. It is nowadays available in the 1971 edition which is written with key signatures although Bartók rarely ever used key signatures.
This set of dances consists of six movements and, according to the composer, it should take four minutes and three seconds to perform, but most professional pianists take up to five minutes. The list of the movements is as follows (with the original Hungarian title listed first, the most commonly known Romanian title second, and the English translation in parentheses):
|Movement||Tempo||Time to perform||Key||Form||Mode|
|Bot tánc / Jocul cu bâtă||Allegro moderato||57 seconds||A minor||Binary||Dorian and Aeolian on key centre A|
|Brâul||Allegro||25 seconds||D minor||Binary||Dorian centered on D|
|Topogó / Pe loc||Andante||45 seconds||B minor||Binary||Aeolian and Arabic influence (augmented seconds) on key centre B or Gypsy scale without leading-tone|
|Bucsumí tánc / Buciumeana||Moderato,||35 seconds||A major||Binary with 2 tunes||Phrygian dominant scale on key centre A|
|Román polka / Poarga Românească||Allegro,||31 seconds||D major||Binary with 2 tunes||Lydian on key centre D|
|Aprózó / Mărunțel||Allegro, = 152, after Più Allegro||13 and 36 seconds||D Major, modulates to A major||3 tunes and coda||Key Centre A; first part begins with Lydian, but is in Mixolydian; second part is in Dorian|
Aside from the version Bartók wrote for a small orchestral ensemble, some of Bartók's friends wrote adaptations or transcriptions of this piece for several different ensembles. The following are the best-known:
Notable recordings of this composition include the following:
|Piano Solo||Record Company||Year of Recording||Format|
|András Schiff||Denon Records / Brilliant Classics||1980||CD|
|Jenő Jandó||Naxos Records||2005||CD|
Notable recordings of the arrangement by Zoltán Székely include the following:
|Violin||Piano||Record Company||Year of Recording||Format|
|Joseph Szigeti||Béla Bartók||EMI Classics||1930||CD|
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Sonatina, Sz. 55, BB. 69 is a piece for solo piano written in 1915 by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. Initially entitled Sonatina on Romanian folk tunes, it is based on folk tunes Bartók collected in his neighbour country Romania, which, even though he proclaimed Hungarian folk music was clearly superior, was a direct source of inspiration all along his active years.
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.
Kossuth, Sz. 21, BB. 31, DD. 75a is a symphonic poem composed by Béla Bartók inspired by the Hungarian politician Lajos Kossuth.
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.
Rhapsody No. 1, Sz. 86, 87, and 88, BB 94 is the first of two virtuoso works for violin and piano, written by Béla Bartók in 1928 and subsequently arranged in 1929 for violin and orchestra, as well as for cello and piano. It is dedicated to Hungarian virtuoso violinist Joseph Szigeti, a close friend of Bartók, who gave the first performance of the orchestra version in Königsberg on 1 November 1929, with Hermann Scherchen conducting the orchestra.
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Fifteen Hungarian Peasant Songs, Sz. 71, BB 79 is a collection of short folk melodies arranged for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was composed between 1914 and 1918. In 1933, Bartók adapted and orchestrated parts of the piece as Hungarian Peasant Songs, Sz. 100, BB 107, commonly known by its Hungarian name, Magyar parasztdalok.
Rhapsody, Op. 1, Sz. 26, BB 36, is a composition for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was finished in 1904. A year later, he wrote a version for piano and orchestra. The catalogue number of this composition is Op. 1, Sz. 26. The initial full-length composition for piano eventually received a catalogue number BB 36a, whereas the second version, with piano and orchestra, received a catalogue number BB 36b.
Three Rondos on Slovak Folk Tunes, Sz. 84, BB 92, also referred to as Three Rondos on Folk Tunes, is a collection of three small pieces for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók.
Four Dirges, Op. 9a, Sz. 45, BB 58 is a short collection of dirges by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók.
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.
Three Hungarian Folksongs, Sz. 66, BB 80b is a collection of folksongs for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was composed between 1914 and 1918.
Three Burlesques, Op. 8c, Sz. 47, BB 55 is a set of burlesques for piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was composed between 1908 and 1911.
Hungarian Pictures, sometimes also referred to as Hungarian Sketches, Sz. 97, BB 103 is a suite for orchestra by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók finished in 1931. The suite consists of orchestrations of earlier short pieces for piano composed between 1908 and 1911.
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