Boosey & Hawkes

bartok

 Portrait

Béla Bartók
1881-1945

Bartók is recognised as one of the most important composers of the twentieth century. His style grew out of a desire to combine his great love of Hungarian folk music with modern developments in western art music, and together with Kodály, he spearheaded a Hungarian neo-nationalism.

Bartók was a virtuoso pianist, but by no means in the "classical" tradition. His playing style was based around the treatment of the piano as a predominantly percussive instrument, and pieces such as the Piano Concerto No.1 and the Ostinato from the Mikrokosmos feature thumping chords, rapid repetition of notes and roaring dynamics.

Bartók’s skill in writing was not limited to the piano; his gifts for orchestration and dramatic form are evident in both the Concerto for Orchestra and the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, the latter rightly regarded as one of the most brilliantly theatrical pieces written in the twentieth century. His string quartets are further examples of technical mastery, with the range of playing styles and dynamics being extended for musical and dramatic purposes.

Bartók's highly sophisticated musical structures often rely on mathematically proportional relationships, such as the Fibonacci numbers and "Golden section" numbers, which relate to proportions and trends found universally in nature. Bartók’s work has been performed, conducted and championed by some of the most eminent conductors of the modern era including Solti, Boulez and Rattle

Recommended Listening:

Concerto for Orchestra, Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta, 6 Dances in Bulgarian Rhythm

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Concerto for Orchestra Sz 116 - Elegia: Andante non troppo PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Concerto for Orchestra Sz 116 - Finale: Presto PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Concerto for Orchestra Sz 116 - Giuoco delle coppie: Allegretto scherzando PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Concerto for Orchestra Sz 116 - Intermezzo interrotto: Allegretto PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Concerto for Orchestra Sz 116 - Introduzione: Andante non troppo - Allegro vivace PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Mikrokosmos Sz 107 - Vol.6 No.146: Ostinato (Vivacissimo) PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta Sz 106 - Adagio PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta Sz 106 - Allegro PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta Sz 106 - Allegro molto PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta Sz 106 - Andante tranquillo PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Six Dances in Bulgarian Rhythm - Vol.6 No.150 PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
Six Dances in Bulgarian Rhythm - Vol.6 No.151 PlayClick for Truetone ordering instructions
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