Slovakian Dance

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Slovakian Dance [lower-alpha 1] [1] [2] is a piece for solo piano by Hungarian composer Béla Bartók. It was presumably composed in 1923, but it was not published until 1999.



This scherzo-style composition was meant to be placed between the second and the third movement of Bartók's Dance Suite , but he eventually refused because of his mathematical principles, as placing it in the Suite would ruin the proportion of the whole work. Since Dance Suite was an orchestral suite, this Slovakian Dance remained as a sketch, unpublished and unorchestrated, until his son, Peter Bartók, made slight changes for it to be published in 1999 by Universal Edition. [3] [2] As this is one of the sketches that he dismissed, there is no identification number for this composition, and most catalogues do not include it.


Slovakian Dance is scored for a solo piano and takes around 2 minutes to perform. It has a total of 92 bars and three different sections.

The first section is the ritornell that was used in movements 1, 2, and 4 of Bartok's Dance Suite, marked Tranquillo in the score. It acts as a short introduction, as well as a placing element within its original piece, as the Dance was meant to be played after a ritornello. This section has 17 bars and is separated by a double bar. The second section, the Slovakian Dance itself, is marked Allegretto in the score and generally gravitates towards F major, even though the key signature makes no specifications. This lively, 2
dance, ends in bar 81, when the ritornell is reprised for the last few bars, marked Lento in the score. [2]

Notable recordings

Notable recordings of this work include:

Piano SoloRecord CompanyYear of RecordingFormat
Jenő Jandó Naxos Records 2005CD [1]


  1. Even though the correct adjective would be slovak, the only edition of this work published in 1999 refers to it as Slovakian Dance.

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  1. 1 2 "Track list from the CD 8.554718 from the Naxos catalogue". Hong Kong: Naxos Digital Services Ltd. 2005. Retrieved July 27, 2011.
  2. 1 2 3 Bartók, Béla (1999). Slovakian dance (in French). Universal Edition. Retrieved 21 September 2020.
  3. Whitehouse, Richard (2005). 8.554718 - BARTOK, B.: Piano Music, Vol. 2 (Jando) - Dance Suite / Romanian Folk Dances. Hong Kong: HNH International Ltd. p. 3. Retrieved July 27, 2011.

See also