Sheet Music: Pastorale

from L'Arlésienne Suite No. 2
Opus numberOp. 23
ComposerGeorges Bizet (1838–1875)
InstrumentationFlute solo
KeyA major
Time signature4/4
Tempo54 BPM
Performance time5:00
Difficulty levelintermediate
Download printable scorePDF Sheet Music (126 kB) (preview)
Download audio tracksMIDI (change tempo/key) MP3 (2.4 MB)
Date added2010-11-17
Last updated2010-11-17
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Wednesday 17 November 2010

Tune of the Day: Pastorale from L'Arlésienne

by Georges Bizet, arranged for solo flute

The second suite derived from Bizet's incidental music for L'Arlésienne opens with a Pastorale, originally the prelude to Act 2 of the play, and the most complete bit of music Bizet had composed for L'Arlesienne that he hadn't already used in the first suite. This broad Andante evokes the rolling Provençal countryside with a simple theme subjected to several treatments and interspersed with gentle, rustic woodwind passages. The middle Andantino notably features the flute and the piccolo as the solo instruments.

Choosing a tempo is not an easy task here. Most editions of the incidental music and of the suite indicate quarter = 54, so this was probably originally marked by Bizet himself. Nonetheless, today the piece is commonly played much faster, at about 80 beats per minute.

Other Movements from the same Work

1.Pastorale Flute solo
3.Minuet Flute & Harp
4.Farandole Flute solo