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David Heyes

Max Bruch: Kol Nidrei for double bass and piano (arranged by David Heyes)

Max Bruch: Kol Nidrei for double bass and piano (arranged by David Heyes)

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About the Composition

Kol Nidrei transcribes beautifully for the double bass and the sonorous and soulful qualities of the instrument create a wealth of tone colors and contrast throughout its solo register. Aimed at the intermediate bassist, there are musical and technical challenges aplenty, creating a worthy addition to the transcription repertoire.

Kol Nidrei Op.47 for cello and orchestra was composed in 1889 and published in Berlin the following year. It is subtitled an 'Adagio on Hebrew Melodies' and Bruch describes the material: "The two melodies are first class - the first is an age-old Hebrew song of atonement, the second (D major) is the middle section of a moving and truly magnificent song 'O weep for those that wept on Babel's stream' (Byron), equally very old. I got to know both melodies in Berlin, where I had much to do with the children of Israel in the Choral Society..."

Kol Nidrei has long been one of Bruch's most popular works and has become standard repertoire for double bass throughout the late 20th-century. The composer also arranged the work for a number of instruments, including violin, and the present edition for double bass was edited by David Heyes for a series of his own chamber music recitals to demonstrate the soulful and cantabile qualities of the solo double bass.

This new edition includes one piano accompaniment (D minor) and two solo parts for both solo and orchestral tunings.

About the Composer

Max Bruch (1838-1920) was a very successful composer in his day, with a work list of almost a hundred works which included three operas, three symphonies, solo works, sacred and secular choral music, art songs and chamber music. He was a respected conductor and teacher and Respighi and Vaughan Williams were two of his more prominent composition students.

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