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Writing, Illustrating & Publishing => Research => Topic started by: AmandaSue on March 07, 2013, 08:52 PM

Title: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AmandaSue on March 07, 2013, 08:52 PM
Is there anyone here who knows a particularly beautiful and moving Viola concerto? I've been searching for one and haven't found one that really grabs me.

It probably sounds silly, but I'm about to write a scene where one of my MC's plays this concerto and we finally get a little bit of a window into her soul and past her rough exterior and the other MC falls in love with her. I doubt the name of the song I mention matters much. But I have so much of the scene in my head, and I just really want the right song to go along with it. Even if I'm the only one who will hear it in my head. Just for the authenticity of the scene.

Any ideas?  Right now, the closest piece I could find to what I'm looking for is Forsyth's Viola Concerto in G minor. But it's still not quite what I want.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: Jaina on March 08, 2013, 05:46 AM
I used to date a violist and I remember he won a concerto competition once, but for the life of me, I can't remember what he played.  I just looked up "viola concertos" and I think it might have been the Telemann (G Major).  Maybe give that a listen?
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AnneN on March 08, 2013, 07:13 AM
Does it have to be a concerto?  Violists also play the unaccompanied Bach suites (originally written for cello), and those are very, very beautiful.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: annemleone on March 08, 2013, 07:27 AM
There aren't many viola concertos. The Telemann that Jaina mentioned is by far the most well known, it's fun to play, but more fast and rhythmic, I wouldn't describe it as beautiful or moving. Schnittke has a modern viola concerto that's quite cool, but it IS modern... not sure if that's your taste or not. I've seen the famous Elgar cello concerto transcribed for viola, that's definitely beautiful.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: annemleone on March 08, 2013, 07:30 AM
Oh, forgot, there's also Bruch's Kol Nidrei (I played that one in high school!), which has some nice haunting, Jewish melodies.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AnneN on March 08, 2013, 11:03 AM
I've got it!  I've got it! The perfect piece for you -- viola classic, gorgeous, played with orchestra:  Max Bruch's Romanze for viola and orchestra, op. 85.  My orchestra played it this past fall.  Try it out (this isn't my orchestra playing, let me just assure you!) and see what you think:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVLZCfuyJQU
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AmandaSue on March 08, 2013, 11:24 AM
Yes, AnneN. You are correct. That's it. Perfect.

Thank you everyone for all your help on this silly, and seemingly insignificant request of mine.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: andracill on March 08, 2013, 12:17 PM
I also love Berlioz's Harold in Italy.  It has some incredibly moving sections.  :)  (I'm also a huge Berlioz fan, in general, though.)
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: LeslieG on March 08, 2013, 12:34 PM
Oh, forgot, there's also Bruch's Kol Nidrei (I played that one in high school!), which has some nice haunting, Jewish melodies.

That's the one I thought of! It's incredibly moving. In case you need any other inspiration, Amanda (the cellist here is a friend, so I couldn't resist :0)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BijjO7bgV8Q
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AnneN on March 08, 2013, 12:36 PM
AmandaSue, it's surely never silly or insignificant to talk about VIOLA music!
:)

(There are probably a few closet violists on this board--the proportion of writers who play the viola is higher than you'd think.)

Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: Larissa on March 08, 2013, 12:53 PM
AmandaSue, it's surely never silly or insignificant to talk about VIOLA music!
:)

(There are probably a few closet violists on this board--the proportion of writers who play the viola is higher than you'd think.)



*raises hand*
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: Betsy on March 08, 2013, 03:07 PM
My aunt was a concert violist, and I inherited her viola. I'm not sure what to do with it. It was made in Austia in the 1890s.

I love the viola.
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: AmandaSue on March 08, 2013, 03:12 PM
Wow, Betsy, what an awesome keepsake!

LeslieG, that song is beautiful. I'm not going to lie. It was a struggle to decide if MC would play cello or viola. But in the end, I had to go with the one that seemed a little less popular and easier to carry. (The easier to carry part is important for the storyline, haha)  I've always wanted to learn the cello. Maybe one day.

I'm glad to see so many closet violists on here. I might have to ask a few questions about playing one. (I'm a french hornist/pianist)
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: LeslieG on March 08, 2013, 03:20 PM
It was a struggle to decide if MC would play cello or viola. But in the end, I had to go with the one that seemed a little less popular and easier to carry. (

I don't blame you. Expense would be an issue, too: The cello that belongs to my friend in the clip costs so much that she can't even think about checking it as baggage, so when she flies, she pays for a separate plane seat for her cello :eek5. (Not sure how the seatbelt thing works...)

In any case, sorry for  :hijacked. Back to our regularly scheduled viola concerts :0)

Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: andracill on March 08, 2013, 04:30 PM
I also played the viola, but only for a few years (which means I never got very good).  I'm a pianist first (which is probably why I never got very good at viola).
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: Barbara Etlin on March 08, 2013, 05:43 PM
This thread has sent me to Google to research viola pieces and it's been a wonderful hour or so of music! I think my favourite is the Telemann.

My best friend played viola in high school. I played the flute. My decision was partly based on the weight of the instrument for carrying home! :-)
Title: Re: Beautiful Viola Concertos
Post by: Kathy Crosett on March 13, 2013, 06:25 PM
Have you considered the one by Bela Bartok? Kim Kashkashian from New England Conservatory made a recording of it ... she just won a Grammy this year, Classical Instrument solo category. Love the idea of a violist as a MC. The instrument is under rated!