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Haendel, Georg Friedrich Georg Friedrich Haendel
Germany Germany
(1685 - 1759)
2210 sheet music
3069 MP3
535 MIDI

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Harp Sheet music Harp and Strings Georg Friedrich Haendel
Haendel, Georg Friedrich: Harp Concerto in Bb Major for Harp & String Ensemble

Harp Concerto in Bb Major for Harp & String Ensemble
Op. 4 No. 6 HWV 294
Georg Friedrich Haendel

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Composer :Georg Friedrich HaendelHaendel, Georg Friedrich (1685 - 1759)
Instrumentation :

Harp and Strings

Style :


Arranger :
Publisher :
Georg Friedrich HaendelMagatagan, Mike (1960 - )
Date :1736
Copyright :Public Domain
The baroque composer George Frideric Händel, was born in Germany on the 23rd February 1685 and died on the 14th April 1759. He was a leading composer of concerti grossi, operas and oratorios. He spent most of his adult life in England and his most well known works are Messiah, Water Music and Music for the Royal Fireworks.

He wrote the Op 4 No 6 in B flat major as a Harp Concerto. In that guise it was first performed on 19 February 1736 along with the Organ Concerto Op 4 No 1 at the premiere of Alexander's Feast. Handel's purpose in providing so diverse a program was a clear and practical one—to give the paying audience enough entertainment to keep them in their seats during the singers' much-needed intermissions. Nevertheless, as Dryden's Ode (on which Alexander's Feast is based) contains an episode wherein noble Timotheus is found playing his harp for Alexander the Great, there is a certain amount of purely dramatic justification for the insertion of a harp concerto into the narrative flow of the oratorio.

Handel composed the music in January 1736, and the work received its premiere at the Covent Garden Theatre, London, on 19 February 1736. In the Opus 4 publication, this Harp Concerto was issued as a work for organ and orchestra (making it congruous with the other five works in the volume), and it is on this instrument that the work is most often played today. A quick glance at the pared-down orchestra parts—the violins are muted, bass parts played pizzicato, and the wind family is represented by two lone flutes—and streamlined textures of Op. 4, No. 6, however, reveals immediately that it was originally conceived of for the quieter and gentler harp. The piece is cast in three movements, more or less following the then-emerging modern concerto fast-slow-fast ordering.

As with many of the organ concertos, the orchestra is entirely subordinate to the soloist in Op. 4, No. 6. In the first movement (Andante allegro), for instance, forty-six of the sixty-six measures are the exclusive province of the harp; the tutti appears just four times (double that if we account for the necessary repeat of each half)—at the movement's opening and close, and to lend its strength to two major internal cadences. However, unlike the organ concertos, whose keyboard parts were played by the very skilled Handel himself, the Harp Concerto features little in the way of virtuosic flair. Certainly there are running sixteenth notes to spare in the first movement, but these are almost always built around repetitive Alberti bass-like figures that fall easily to the hand.

The transparent opening movement, with its main theme built of seven broken-up, individual gestures, gives way to the thicker, more "well-glued" melody of the G minor Larghetto. Throughout the movement, the tutti is consumed with pondering repeated dotted figures while, each time it is given a chance, the harp/organ breaks out with improvisatory musings of a far more flexible nature.

Wholly dance-like is the concluding Allegro moderato, with its bouncing 3/8 meter and 1 + 2 metric grouping.

Although originally created for Harp (or Organ) and Orchestra, I created this arrangement for Concert (Pedal) Harp and Strings (2 Violins, Viola, cello & Bass).
Source / Web :MuseScore
Added by magataganm the 2015-04-19

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This sheet music is part of the collection of magataganm :
Harp Arrangements
arrangements pour harpe
Collection of Harp Arramgements
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