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David Heyes

Miniatures Book 3 for double bass & piano (edited by David Heyes)

Miniatures Book 3 for double bass & piano (edited by David Heyes)

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About the Book

Miniatures is part of an ongoing series featuring long-forgotten or unknown music, primarily by bassist-composers of the late 19th and early 20th-centuries alongside tasteful transcriptions, and is aimed at the intermediate bassist. Book 3 brings together music from France, Germany, Russia, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic and Belgium.

This series aims to bring a wealth of rare and neglected music back to life by creating new and accessible editions with accompaniments for both tunings. Primarily in the orchestral register, including passages in thumb position, each miniature is ideal as both recital and study repertoire, offering musical and technical challenges in equal measure. Most of the pieces in this collection last around 3-4 minutes each.

Miniatures Book 3 is edited and arranged by David Heyes.

The edition includes accompaniments for both solo and orchestral tunings.

Table of Contents

1) F.J. Gossec (1734-1829) - Gavotte in G major

Gossec’s Gavotte, one of the composers most popular pieces, and was arranged for the violin in 1904 by the German violinist Willy Burmester (1869-1933). It transcribes beautifully for the double bass, remaining in bass clef throughout, with a vibrant rhythmic momentum that is fun to play.

2) Robert Schumann (1810-1856) - Träumerei Op.15, No.7

Scenes of Childhood (Kinderszenen) Op.15 consists of 13 pieces for solo piano and was composed in 1838. Träumerei (Dreaming) is one of the most popular pieces from the series, has been transcribed for many instruments and, in only 24 bars, the composer has created a perfect masterpiece of gentle simplicity and serenity.

3) Modest Mussorgsky (1839-1881) - Une Larme (A Tear)

Une Larme is originally for solo piano and was composed in 1880. It has been transcribed for many instruments and its long flowing melodies, alongside a simple chordal accompaniment, are particularly suitable for double bass and piano. The soulful key of G minor, contrasting a middle section in the tonic major, allows the bassist to demonstrate the lyrical and cantabile qualities of the instrument.

4) Max Dauthage (1863-1937) - Waltz

Waltz is the seventh piece from 20 Melodic Pieces, first published in Vienna and Leipzig in 1911. Dauthage studied at the Vienna Conservatoire with Simandl and taught there from 1910-31, and it likely these pieces were composed for his students. Waltz is elegant and charming, influenced by the Viennese waltz composers of the 19th-century, emphasising the sonorous and singing qualities of the double bass across its solo register.

5) W.A. Mozart (1756-1791) - Ave Verum Corpus

Ave Verum Corpus was composed in 1791 for Anton Stoll, a friend of Mozart’s who was a church musician of St Stephan in Baden (near Vienna). Originally scored for SATB choir, strings and organ, it is one of Mozart’s most popular and well known pieces. The flowing melody is suited to the lyrical qualities of the double bass and Recital Music also publish a version for double bass quartet.

6) Franz Liszt (1811-1886) - ‘Es muss ein Wunderbares sein (It has to be Wonderful)

Composed in 1852 and published in 1859, this transcription was made by the Czech bassist-composer Gustav Láska (1847-1928). Although primarily known for his virtuosic piano music, Liszt composed a wealth of vocal music between 1839-1880, and this simple song, only 32 bars in length, is beautifully evocative and calm, with a simple and chordal accompaniment.

7) František Černý (1861-1940) - Concert-Etude in G minor

This study is from Černý’s Method for Double Bass and is originally an octave lower. The composer created piano accompaniments for 14 studies and this study lends itself particularly well to be played played in the solo register and is a great addition to the intermediate repertoire. The style is tonal and traditional, with a gently supportive accompaniment, which allows the bassist to weave long flowing melodic lines.

8) Franz Schubert (1797-1828) - Am Meer (By the Sea)

Am Meer is the 12th song from Schubert’s song-cycle Schwanengesang (Swan Song), setting words by Heinrich Heine, and was composed in 1828. The title of the song-cycle was given by its first publisher, a year after Schubert’s death, and Am Meer has a simple and melodic line with a slowly moving chordal accompaniment. The occasional use of piano tremolandos adds drama and momentum to a beautiful and much loved song.

9) Antonín Dvořák (1841-1904) - Largo (From the New World)

The Largo, with its haunting cor anglais solo, is the main theme from the slow movement from Dvořák’s Symphony ‘From the New World’, which was composed during his time as the Director of the National Conservatory of Music in New York between 1892-95. Transcribed for voice and piano in 1922 by William Arms Fisher (1861-1948), using his own text, the melody is instantly recognisable and creates a wonderful addition to the transcription repertoire for the intermediate bassist.

10) Adrien-François Servais (1807-1866) - Le Lac de Côme (Barcarolle)

Servais was one of the most influential cellists of the 19th-century and was one of the founders of the modern cello schools in Paris and Madrid. He composed and transcribed many works for cello and Le Lac de Côme is originally by G. Alari, transcribed for cello by Servais and subsequently for double bass by Louis Buschmann. The solo line emphasises the lyrical qualities of the double bass, including pizzicato and harmonics, with a gently rocking and evocative piano accompaniment, typical of much salon and characteristic music from the late 19th-century.

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