Concerto for Two Violins and String Orchestra


Two Violins & String Orchestra
Solo Instruments with Orchestra, String Orchestra
Commissioned by Yehudi Menuhin
First Performance
24.6.62, Bath Festival, Guildhall, Bath: Bath Festival Orchestra/Arnold/Menuhin/Lysy

Score 0-571-50046-3, piano reduction and solo parts 0-571-50017-X on sale, parts for hire

Programme Notes

Malcolm Arnold Concerto for Two Violins and Strings Allegro risoluto Andantino Vivace Malcolm Arnold’s Concerto for Two Violins was written for Menuhin and his pupil Alberto Lysy for performance at the 1962 Bath Festival. This distinguished send-off was followed by successful performances elsewhere. This immediately comprehensible and enjoyable work is another testament to Arnold’s unswerving faith in the continuing viability of identifiable tunes and diatonic harmony seasoned with the spice of dissonance. As with all his music, it is written with an experience performer’s feeling for the instruments. The first movement contrasts lively thematic and rhythmic ideas with a suave second subject in warm thirds and sixths. The slow movement switches from G minor to the totally different atmosphere of E minor. It is a ‘duet without words’, dominated by the sadly beautiful theme of its unaccompanied opening. The finale is a swift and exciting display of bravura, unified by a kind of motto-phrase in the bass. M.J.

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