Friday 1 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Allegro by Telemann

 from Partita No. 6, arranged for flute and keyboard

This is the sixth movement of Georg Philipp Telemann's Partita No. 6 in E-flat major, TWV 41:Es1, originally published in 1716 as part of the Kleine Kammermusik (“little chamber music”) collection. The original edition indicates that the melody is intended to be played by an oboe, a violin, or a flute.

Categories: BaroqueDifficulty: intermediate
Saturday 2 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Allemanda by Corelli

 from Trio Sonata in C major, transcribed for two flutes

This allemanda is the second movement of Italian Baroque composer Arcangelo Corelli's Trio Sonata No. 3 in C major, published in 1685. This piece is notable because it was the origin of the “affair of the fifths”, a theoretical dispute between Corelli and other composers of the time. The cause of consternation was Corelli's alleged transgression of a rule that forbids the use of consecutive fifths in music. Some composers adhered to this rule more rigidly than others, but Corelli was particularly conspicuous in his actions. This is particularly apparent in the first four measures of this allemanda, where the first violin and bass part descend in parallel fifths. The criticism came from experienced and reputed composers (most notably, Giovanni Paolo Colonna), who despite their sound theoretical bases did not have a fraction of the success that Corelli was achieving all over Europe. In the end, Corelli's position was that, independently of theory, the condemned passage sounded good to him... and his fans agreed with him!

Thanks to Mario for contributing this piece!

Categories: Allemandes Baroque SonatasDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 3 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in D major by Köhler

 from “22 Studies in Expression and Facility”

This is the seventh piece from 22 Studies in Expression and Facility, Op. 89 by Italian flutist and composer Ernesto Köhler. This collection was originally published in 1904 with the German title 22 Vortrags- und Geläufigkeits Etuden für Flöte.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Monday 4 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Mama's Pet

 Traditional Irish reel

Francis O'Neill printed a few versions of this tune in his books, under different titles. In Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody (1922) he explains:

In boyhood days I memorized the first part of this reel from the fiddle playing of Mr. Downing a gentleman farmer who taught me the rudiments of music on the flute. Thirty-five years later the second part was supplied by A.S. Beamish, another West Cork musician. Being without a name the tune was called “Timothy Downing” or “Downing's Reel”, in the O'Neill Collections. With a third part obtained from the famous fiddler John McFadden of Mayo, this tripartite reel is presented under its presumably true name.

Categories: Celtic Music Reels Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Tuesday 5 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Du bist wie eine Blume

 by Schumann, transcribed for flute and piano

Published in 1840, Robert Schumann's song cycle Myrthen, Op. 25, is dedicated to the composer's wife, Clara. The 26 songs included were presented to her on the occasion of their wedding. Myrthen, or myrtles, are European evergreen shrubs with white or rosy flowers that are often used to make bridal wreaths.

The 24th piece of the cycle, “Du bist wie eine Blume” (“You are like a flower”), sets to music a sweet short poem by Heinrich Heine:

You are just like a flower
So fair and pure and dear;
Looking at you, sweet sadness
Invades my heart with fear.

I feel I should be folding
My hands upon your hair,
Praying that God may keep you
So dear and pure and fair.

Categories: Lieder Love songs RomanticDifficulty: easy
Wednesday 6 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Softly, Softly in a Whisper

 from “Cinderella”, arranged for two flutes

This flute duet appears in Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in 1833. It is an arrangement of a piece from Cinderella, the 1831 English-language adaptation of Rossini's La Cenerentola by Irish violinist and composer Michael Rophino Lacy.

Categories: Opera excerpts RomanticDifficulty: intermediate
Thursday 7 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in F major by Dôthel

 from “Studi per il flauto”

The study we present today is the thirteenth piece from Studi per il flauto in tutti j tuoni e modi (“Flute studies in all keys and modes”) by French-Italian flutist and composer Niccolò Dôthel (a.k.a. Nicolas D'Hotel).

Categories: Classical Etudes Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Friday 8 December 2017

Tune of the Day: A Veteran

 Traditional English jig

The only known appearance of this traditional English jig in print is in Harding's All-Round Collection of Jigs, Reels and Country Dances, published in New York in 1905.

Categories: Jigs Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Saturday 9 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Tempo di Minuetto by Telemann

 from Partita No. 6, arranged for flute and keyboard

This minuet-like piece is the closing movement of Georg Philipp Telemann's Partita No. 6 in E-flat major, TWV 41:Es1, originally published in 1716 as part of the Kleine Kammermusik (“little chamber music”) collection. The original edition indicates that the melody is intended to be played by an oboe, a violin, or a flute.

Categories: Baroque MinuetsDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 10 December 2017

Tune of the Day: O felice, o chiara notte

 Traditional Italian Christmas carol, arranged for flute quartet

This arrangement for three concert flutes and one alto flute of “O felice, o chiara notte” (“O happy, o clear night”) was kindly contributed to our collection by Francesco Spiga. The carol comes from Trentino, a mountainous region in Northern Italy.

O happy, o clear night,
Of that light you are fruitful,
But the dawn is more joyous,
More charming than morning.

Come now, o you shepherds, do not sleep,
For it is time to watch!
But those voices are gone,
They quickly come back.

Come now, o you shepherds, to the hut,
Come on and do not delay!
Forget your lambs:
God will watch from above.

Categories: Christmas carols Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Monday 11 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in B minor by Köhler

 from “22 Studies in Expression and Facility”

This is the eighth piece from 22 Studies in Expression and Facility, Op. 89 by Italian flutist and composer Ernesto Köhler. This collection was originally published in 1904 with the German title 22 Vortrags- und Geläufigkeits Etuden für Flöte.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: advanced
Tuesday 12 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Northern Lass

 Traditional English country dance

This old Northern England country dance tune first appeared in print in John Playford's Apollo's Banquet, published in London in 1669. It subsequently appears in several ballad operas, although in altered form, usually with the title “Lord Frog”, from a song written to it by Thomas D'Urfey which begins “Great Lord Frog to Lady Mouse”.

Thanks to Phil for suggesting this tune!

Categories: Dance tunes Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 13 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Allegro by Vivaldi

 from Chamber Concerto in D minor, transcribed for flute and piano

This is the final movement of a Concerto in D minor for Flute, Violin, Bassoon and Continuo, which Vivaldi probably composed in the 1720s. It can also be played as a flute duet, with the second flute playing the violin part (right hand of the piano arrangement).

Thanks to Pavlína for suggesting this piece!

Categories: Baroque Concertos Written for FluteDifficulty: advanced
Thursday 14 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Adagio by Corelli

 from Trio Sonata in C major, transcribed for two flutes

This Adagio is the third movement of Italian Baroque composer Arcangelo Corelli's Trio Sonata No. 3 in C major, published in 1685. Corelli was a violinist, and strictly speaking this sonata was originally scored for two violins and continuo; however, in those times it was typical to write scores that were adaptable to different instruments, so that they could be sold to the widest possible audience, and it is evident that the concept also applies to this sonata.

Thanks to Mario for contributing this piece!

Categories: Baroque SonatasDifficulty: easy
Friday 15 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in F minor by Dôthel

 from “Studi per il flauto”

This study in F minor is the fourteenth piece from Studi per il flauto in tutti j tuoni e modi (“Flute studies in all keys and modes”) by French-Italian flutist and composer Niccolò Dôthel (a.k.a. Nicolas D'Hotel).

Categories: Classical Etudes Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Saturday 16 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Broom O' The Cowdenknowes

 Traditional Scottish air

This very old air has been set to various words, but most famously appears as “The Broom of the Cowdenknowes”. The title of the song references the Scotch Broom (Cytisus scoparius) flower, a vibrant yellow flower found throughout Scotland, including the barony of Cowdenknowes. Stems of the plant were at one time bundled together and bound to sticks for use as sweepers, hence the name ‛broom’ for the common implement.

The melody can be traced back to the mid-17th century and is probably Scottish in origin, or at least so believe most scholars. Its earliest appearance in print is in John Playford's The Dancing Master, published in 1651.

Thanks to Jean for suggesting this tune!

Sunday 17 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Adagio by Leclair

 from Flute Sonata in E minor

This gorgeous Adagio is the opening movement of French Baroque composer Jean-Marie Leclair's Sonata for violin or flute and continuo in E minor, Op. 1 No. 6. The first edition of this sonata was published in Paris around 1723.

Categories: Baroque SonatasDifficulty: intermediate
Monday 18 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Ingle Side

 arranged for two flutes

This flute duet is taken from Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in Philadelphia in 1833. Unfortunately we've been unable to trace its origins; although there exists a Scottish air known as “The Ingle Side”, it appears to be unrelated to this tune.

Categories: Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate
Tuesday 19 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in B-flat major by Köhler

 from “22 Studies in Expression and Facility”

This is the ninth piece from 22 Studies in Expression and Facility, Op. 89 by Italian flutist and composer Ernesto Köhler. This collection was originally published in 1904 with the German title 22 Vortrags- und Geläufigkeits Etuden für Flöte.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 20 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Glenmore Hunt

 Traditional Irish reel

The earliest appearance in print of this Irish reel is in the third volume of O'Farrell's Pocket Companion for the Irish or Union Pipes, published in 1808.

Categories: Celtic Music Reels Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Thursday 21 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Siciliano by Paul Merkus

 for flute and piano

Today's piece was kindly contributed to our collection by its composer, Paul Merkus from the Netherlands. Composed in 1986, it is written in the style of a traditional siciliana, but features more contemporary chord progressions.

Categories: Contemporary Sicilianas Written for FluteDifficulty: easy
Friday 22 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow

 African-Americal spiritual, arranged for four flutes

This Christmas plantation song is said to have been first published in Slave Songs of the United States (1867), but it wasn't printed in musical form until 1909, when it appeared in a songbook titled Religious Folksongs of the Negro as Sung on the Plantations. This, as with other similar books, was a collection of Negro spirituals heard sung, then transcribed as a manuscript for publication. Since spirituals were passed on orally on the basis of memory, it is hard to tell their true age.

Many thanks to Francesco Spiga for contributing the present arrangement for four flutes!

Categories: Christmas carols Spirituals Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Saturday 23 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in F-sharp major by Dôthel

 from “Studi per il flauto”

This little minuet in F-sharp major is the fifteenth piece from Studi per il flauto in tutti j tuoni e modi (“Flute studies in all keys and modes”) by French-Italian flutist and composer Niccolò Dôthel (a.k.a. Nicolas D'Hotel).

Categories: Classical Etudes Minuets Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate
Sunday 24 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Venez, divin Messie

 Traditional French Christmas carol

“Venez divin Messie” (“O Come, Divine Messiah”) is a popular French song that is commonly sung during Advent (the four weeks before Christmas). The melody originates from an old Christmas carol known as “Laissez paître vos bestes”, which dates back to the 16th century.

Thanks to Marcello for suggesting this tune!

Monday 25 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Drum Major

 Traditional American marching tune

The only known appearance in print of this 6/8-time quick march, probably of American origin, is in Harding's All-Round Collection of Jigs, Reels and Country Dances, published in New York in 1905.

Categories: Marches Military music Traditional/FolkDifficulty: easy
Tuesday 26 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Allemanda by Corelli

 from Trio Sonata in C major, transcribed for two flutes

This allemanda is the fourth and final movement of Italian Baroque composer Arcangelo Corelli's Trio Sonata No. 3 in C major, published in 1685. Corelli was a violinist, and strictly speaking this sonata was originally scored for two violins and continuo; however, in those times it was typical to write scores that were adaptable to different instruments, so that they could be sold to the widest possible audience, and it is evident that the concept also applies to this sonata.

Thanks to Mario for contributing this piece!

Categories: Allemandes Baroque SonatasDifficulty: intermediate
Wednesday 27 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study in G minor by Köhler

 from “22 Studies in Expression and Facility”

This 12/16-time étude “in the style of a Tarantella” (a folk dance from Southern Italy) is the tenth piece from 22 Studies in Expression and Facility, Op. 89 by Italian flutist and composer Ernesto Köhler. This collection was originally published in 1904 with the German title 22 Vortrags- und Geläufigkeits Etuden für Flöte.

Categories: Etudes Romantic Written for FluteDifficulty: advanced
Thursday 28 December 2017

Tune of the Day: The Four-Hand Reel

 Traditional Irish reel

This melody appears, under the title “Langford's Reel”, in the mid-19th century music manuscripts of uilleann piper James Goodman. The present setting is taken from Francis O'Neill's Waifs and Strays of Gaelic Melody, published in Chicago in 1922. O'Neill remarks:

“The Four Hand Reel” as far as the writer is aware was first brought to Chicago in 1886 by Barney Delaney, an excellent Irish piper. So versatile was he, like most great Irish musicians, in the manipulation of his instrument, that he varied his tunes according to fancy without detriment to tone or rhythm, but rather to the advantage of the general effect. Although not included in any collection of Irish music published beyond the Atlantic, the strain must have been quite popular in the Eastern States, for we find the tune in a Boston publication no less than four times, and named respectively: “Corporal Casey's Favorite”, “Lady Gardner's Reel”, “Parnell's Reel”, and “Yellow-Haired Laddie”; all consisting of but two parts each. The setting here presented was memorized from Delaney's playing, but no bare scoring of measured bars could do justice to his inimitable execution. Since the foregoing was written I find that “The Five Mile Chase” in R.M. Levey's Second Collection of the Dance Music of Ireland, London, 1873; consisting of but two parts, is also a variant of “The Four Hand Reel”.

The reel had actually been in general circulation in the United States for some years prior to 1886. Around 1867 it appeared under the “Four Hand Reel” title in 1000 Jigs and Reels by Elias Howe, who records:

The Scotch are indefatigable when dancing this Reel; they seem almost intoxicated with it—they snap their fingers—throw their arms and feet in the air—screech out—and make such quick, and difficult steps, that the eyes have trouble following them. The figure is danced by two ladies and two gentlemen forming a line of four, the ladies in the center. They begin with a chain in passing in and out of each other, until the two gentlemen return to their places, the ladies finish facing the gentlemen; then they set (or balance) as long as they can—in fact, they never seem tired, and seem to acquire fresh strength each time they come to the balance.

Categories: Celtic Music Reels Traditional/FolkDifficulty: intermediate
Friday 29 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Vivace by Leclair

 from Flute Sonata in E minor

This lively piece is the second movement of French Baroque composer Jean-Marie Leclair's Sonata for violin or flute and continuo in E minor, Op. 1 No. 6. The first edition of this sonata was published in Paris around 1723.

Categories: Baroque SonatasDifficulty: intermediate
Saturday 30 December 2017

Tune of the Day: I Stood Among the Glitt'ring Throng

 arranged for flute duet

This song was composed by Englishman Sir Henry Bishop (1786–1855).

I stood amid the glitt'ring throng,
I heard a voice, its tones were sweet,
I turn'd to see from whence they came,
And gazed on all I long'd to meet;
She was a fair and gentle girl,
Her bright smile greeted me by chance —
I whisper'd low! I took her hand,
I led her forth to dance.

The present arrangement for two flutes is taken from Blake's Young Flutist's Magazine, published in 1833.

Categories: Love songsDifficulty: easy
Sunday 31 December 2017

Tune of the Day: Study No. 16 in F-sharp minor

 from “Studi per il flauto”

This study in F-sharp minor is the sixteenth piece from Studi per il flauto in tutti j tuoni e modi (“Flute studies in all keys and modes”) by French-Italian flutist and composer Niccolò Dôthel (a.k.a. Nicolas D'Hotel).

Categories: Classical Etudes Written for FluteDifficulty: intermediate