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Zoltán Kodály: Dances of Marosszék

  • for orchestra
  • 2 2 2 2 - 4 2 0 0 - timp, perc, str
  • Duration: 12’
  • Instrumentation details:
    1st flute
    2nd flute (+picc)
    1st clarinet in A (+cl(Bb))
    2nd clarinet in A (+cl(Bb))
    1st oboe
    2nd oboe
    1st horn in F
    2nd horn in F
    3rd horn in F
    4th horn in F
    1st trumpet
    2nd trumpet
    violin I
    violin II
  • Composer: Zoltán Kodály

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Work introduction

“My nurse, a Hungarian from Marosszék, was a good singer, a good Heyduc dancer“, writes John Kemeny, prince of Transylvania (1607-1662) in his autobiography.

It is perhaps no accident that most of the old folk-dance music has been preserved unto our days in the district of Marosszék and that some pieces are called “Marosszéki” even in other regions.

It is probable that these pieces, known to us as instrumental, were originally sung. Of some of them the worded vocal has even been found. Until the war, one could hear such pieces in every village, played either on the violin or on a shepherd’s flute; old people used to sing them. The famous Hungarian dances, world-famous through Brahms are the expression of the spirit of the Hungarian city about 1860, being mostly composed by native musicians of this epoch. The Marosszék dances are of a former period, suggestive of the image of Transylvania, once called “Fairyland”.

Zoltan Kodály.


The complete perusal score (PDF-preview)

World première

Sächsische Staatsoper Dresden (Semperoper), Dresden (DE)
Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden
Fritz Busch

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