Sheet Music: Variations on a Theme by Rossini

TitleVariations on a Theme by Rossini
Alternate titlesVariations in E major on a Theme from Rossini's La Cenerentola
Variations on “Non più mesta accanto al fuoco”
Opus numberB.9 / Op. A1, No. 5
ComposerFrédéric Chopin (1810–1849)
InstrumentationFlute and Piano
KeyE major
Time signature4/4
Tempo100 BPM
Performance time4:05
Difficulty leveladvanced
Download printable scorePDF Sheet Music (213 kB) (preview)
Download audio tracksMIDI (change tempo/key) MP3 (3.4 MB)
Play-along accompanimentMIDI (change tempo/key) MP3 (3.5 MB)
Date added2010-04-27
Last updated2010-04-27
Download popularity index☆☆☆☆☆ 6.3 (very popular)
Romantic, Variations, Written for Flute


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Tuesday 27 April 2010

Tune of the Day: Variations on a Theme by Rossini

by Frédéric Chopin, for Flute and Piano

This set of variations on a popular Rossini aria is charming, fluent, and not lacking in imagination. It is in a typical variation form for the period, with each of the four variations a decorated version of the original tune. The theme of these brilliant variations comes from the aria “Non più mesta accanto al fuoco”, which is the finale of Rossini's opera “La Cenerentola” (Cinderella). In this aria, Angelina (aka Cenerentola) bids farewell to all the days spent as a housekeeper in her stepfather's house. Rossini, much admired by Chopin, composed the entire opera in 24 days.

The occasion for Chopin's writing this piece, at the age of 14, is not known, but it was most likely written for the composer's father (an amateur flute player) or one of the other flute players the elder Chopin knew and often played with. It is fortunate that the work survived. It appears that there was only one manuscript copy, and that it was kept by one of the composer's friends. The work did not appear in print until 1953.