Unaccompanied classical violin pieces by female composers
I believe I will perform next year at a local venue that is quite large. The performers are female only, because their goal is to recognize women in music.
My goal is to recognize classical music, and for this to recognize classical music composed by women, since most people don’t really understand classical, and few realize that there were actual female composers. Also, this province is known more for fiddle than classical violin (Natalie MacMaster, anyone?), so I’d really like to show that it’s not as rigid as the stereotype says around here.
Do you have any suggestions for a piece composed by a woman that is preferably dead, around intermediate level? I don’t know vibrato right now, and I don't know if I will next year (or the end of this one), as I am having a few complications with it. Thus, it probably shouldn't be super slow, which would require more vibrato.
If the piece is one of the ones that absolutely requires accompaniment, I may be able to have a pianist, flutist, or possibly a guitarist, but I’d prefer unaccompanied. It’d be more definite if they allowed male accompaniment, but where it’s all women and about women, I doubt they would.
I think each performer is allowed one-three songs/pieces, so I’ll need a few suggestions!
It’s for July, 2019, but really, the auditions are for November-January, I can’t recall which specific month. So that’s why I need them soon.
Thanks in advance.
I would ask the organizers whether they could help you identify an accompanist that will already be there. One cool idea would be to do the first movement of the D Major Sonata by Elisabeth Jacquet de La Guerre. That could be performed unaccompanied, but if there will be a cellist who is already going to be there, they could accompany you since the accompaniment is a continuo part. The advantage of this piece is that it's baroque and you won't be needing your "Brahms vibrato."
Romance by Amy Beach, if you can find a pianist. I've never tried it unaccompanied; perhaps it might work.
Here's a bit of a wacky idea, and it will require you to do a little research. There is a theory, I believe related to an inscription on a manuscript copy, that the JS Bach cello suites were actually composed by his wife Anna Magdalena. One of my guilty pleasures most days is playing the famous prelude from the first suite in G, transposed to D, on my violin. Personally, I recall looking at the evidence and deciding, nah, I think JS wrote 'em, but the debate itself raises many interesting issues related to women who were composers, and so I think you could get away with it. It is SUCH a beautiful piece. No need for vibrato. Unaccompanied, of course. Anyway, that's my suggestion. Good luck!
Ellen Taaffe Zwilich has a solo violin piece. Joan Tower has also done a few. Although if you're still getting vibrato together, those might be a little bit of a reach.
Most of the pieces suggested are probably a stretch at your level. Better to play something you can feel good about.
I just now played the Beach Romance (unaccompanied); I think it works pretty well that way.
Lol @ "preferably dead"
The Amy Beach Romance is intermediate level; I don't think it's too difficult for the OP.
Eckhardt-Gramatté's unaccompanied violin music
Roxana Panufnik wrote a fun piece called Hora Bessarabia for the 2016 Menuhin Competition – worth checking out!
But is Roxana dead, Aditya? She needs to be dead.
A pianist/organist I know has been quite a fan of Louise Farrenc's piano music (though he's now comparatively healthily fixated by a girlfriend and hasn't mentioned Mme Farrenc at all of late - not that fixation with HER would have been that unhealthy!). I haven't heard her music at all. However, I see a couple of violin and piano sonatas in the list of her compositions.
I guess the Beach could be played without piano accompaniment. But without vibrato?
The violin sonata by Amanda Maier is one of my favorites, but it's similar in style and difficulty to the Brahms sonatas, so it would not work without piano and may be too difficult.
Elizabeth Reed Smith: I can play some level eight pieces. I think I can manage a few pieces that are level four-seven. As for the ones suggested before your comment, I have played the Cello Suites, the Violin Sonata in D Major seems extremely easy, and the only difficult thing I heard with the Beach Romance is the vibrato. I imagine you're probably thinking I exaggerated my level with "intermediate" because I don't know vibrato, and perhaps I should have expanded on that, but I have "known" vibrato for quite a while. I just haven't been able to master it. But yes, it's much more practical to perform a piece that is comfortable to play. Thanks for the suggestion of the etudes. I will look at those:)
Does anyone know the level of difficulty for these, and where to find the sheet music?
check sheetmusicplus--I've found some Bacewicz there. SHAR usually has a pretty good selection, and often Johnson String has what SHAR doesn't.
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