Bela Bartok: Romanian Dances

There are many great and near-great performances of Bartok’s Romanian Dances, usually performed on violin or viola or cello with piano, or for piano solo too.  There is an orchestral version too.

I love this music and have played the viola and the violin versions myself with a lot of pleasure and some degree of success.

I have heard my friend, John Walz, the great cellist in Los Angeles, perform this piece on cello with guitarist, James Smith, in a 1983 recording.

However, I found this recording recently and found it unique in its stylistic approach–Gilles Apap on the violin with a small ensemble of Spanish guitar and upright bass.  Apap really bends the tempo and adds a country-load of glissandos and other effects, but all in all it’s a nice peformance.  I think that the upright bass really adds so much to this music and the ensemble’s performance.  Makes me want to wander the Romanian woods as a gypsy, looking for old world village life, ferocious and delirious music, and good yogurt.  Enjoy!

While you are in the mood for some old-world dance music from eastern Europe, try this one too (a short documentary about the music and musicians of Romania):

Published by anthonycollinsfilm

I am a documentary filmmaker, teacher, writer, and musician. I have lived, worked, and traveled in many parts of the world, and look forward to more adventures and opportunities for learning in the future. I am using this blog as a process of learning, a chance to reflect upon the past, and a good way to express what I know in the moment.

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