Recorded on 01/01/1970, uploaded on 02/23/2009
Musician's or Publisher's Notes
Though already in use for over a century, Arcangelo Corelli’s Violin Sonata in D minor, twelfth and last in his opus 5 set, has indelibly linked his name to the “La folia” theme. The sixteen-measure harmonic structure, similar to the modern-day 12-bar blues, is based around the tonic and dominant harmonies of a minor key (most often D minor) and its relative major and first appeared in the latter part of the 16th century. The first documented piece to be termed “folia,” and possibly the first to link its harmonic progression with a distinctive melody, was by Jean-Baptiste Lully in 1672. However, Corelli’s variations composed almost three decades later in 1700 is the composition most often associated with the tune, so much so that Sergei Rachmaninov titled his own variations on “La folia” Variations on a Theme of Corelli.
Written for violin and continuo, Corelli states the theme with a characteristic sarabande rhythm, lending the stately feel of that dance to the already melancholy harmonic progression of the theme. The variations that follow become increasing intricate, varying not only the melodic line but also the harmonic progression as well as presenting the theme in other time signatures. Since its composition, Corelli’s variations have been reinterpreted by later musicians with accompaniments far more pianistic and elaborate than the original continuo would have allowed for and introducing virtuoso techniques into the solo part. Arrangements for the viola have also appeared as well as replacing the keyboard accompaniment with the guitar, emphasizing the Iberian origins of the “folia.” Joseph DuBose
We at classicalconnect.com believe that classical music is a necessity of life. It is our pleasure to be your virtual concert hall and bring you this performance.
Copyright 2008-2010 Classical Connect, LLC