Four Novelletten Op 52 – #4 – Allegro Molto

 

Composed:  1903
Instrumentation:  String Orchestra with tambourine and triangle
Performance Time: 4 minutes

 

  • Composed between 1901-1903, the Four Novelletten Op 52 may have been inspired by Robert Schumann’s four piano miniatures Novelletten Op 21, composed in 1838. Coleridge Taylor’s work is romantic in style but also explores the possibilities of the modern string orchestra.
  • The first three of the Novelletten could be mistaken for cotillion pieces – dance-like, lyrical, and at one point sentimental.  However the fourth has an energy that completes the work on an exuberant high.
  • The work was dedicated to composer and violin virtuoso Ethel Barns.  She premiered and performed many of Coleridge-Taylor’s works, including a subsequent violin-piano arrangement of Novelletten. 
  • Even though Novello lost money when the score was printed it appears to have been one of the composer’s favourites.  He repeatedly programmed the pieces at concerts he was conducting.

 

Novelletten #4 is played here by the The Orchestra Now (TŌN), conducted by Zachary Schwartzman:

 

And here is the complete work performed by the Lexington Chamber Orchestra under the direction of Maestro Jan Pellant. 

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