On Bartók's violin duets


Although I had performed and studied Bartók's 44 Duos for Two Violins at various points in my life, my real interest in the pieces began a few years ago after reading violinist Joseph Szigeti's book, Szigeti on the Violin. In this book he speaks of their “enormous pedagogical value which has not yet been fully recognized by teachers”1. Szigeti speaks of the pedagogical merit of the duets, not only as a means of learning various violin techniques, but also as a “key” to the other violin works of Bartók2. According to Szigeti, after studying these works, the violinist will have a more complete understanding of many techniques and idioms in Bartók's language, including “bow articulation, in the realization of a declamatory or parlando line, of accentuating cross rhythms, that at first seem to 'go against the grain' but turn out to be perfectly convincing”.3


This idea of the Duos being a “key” to Bartók's idiom stuck with me, and I began to look more deeply into the pieces. An interest in Bartók's own field recordings and Hungarian folk musicians furthered and greatly expanded my study in the pieces. Bartók's use of expression markings in the Duos, which are intended to teach children, also provide a sample of a wide range of characters and intentions which can be brought back to other music of his, such as the Sonata for Solo violin, Contrasts, Violin Concerti, and more.




Bartók's violin Duos owe their immediate existence to a correspondence in 1930 between the composer and Erich Doflein, a German violinist and teacher, who first asked for a violin duet arrangement of Bartók's For Children. Doflein, together with his wife, was planning a violin method, and felt that he lacked “real music” which was “suitable for teaching”4. However, rather than arranging the works Doflein requested, Bartók chose to write a set of entirely new pieces for two violins.


The For Children set for piano and the 44 Duos for violin still have much in common. Both collections are arrangements of folk song material - in the case of For Children, Bartók uses Hungarian and Slovak tunes. The 44 Duos, however, cast a wider net, and the folk tunes are collected not only from Hungary (14 duets) and Slovakia (13 duets), but are also Romanian (9), Ruthenian (4), Serbian (1), and Arabian (1). Two of the Duos (#35 and 36) are original melodies by Bartók, which are written in the style of folk compositions.5


Duo #19, A Fairy Tale, is the only one of the violin duets to use a folk tune from For Children, which comes from Book 1 #26. The piano version is written with a swinging dancing accompaniment, whereas the violin version has a meandering and second violin accompaniment which plays a long line.



Underlying Causes of Composition

Of the great composers of the 20th century, Bartók and Kodály stand out, along with Hindemith, by their contributions to music pedagogy. While Hindemith made his greatest pedagogical contributions through the teaching of composition and music theory, Bartók and Kodály spent much time and serious dedication to the education of children. The Kodály concept covers the teaching of many aspects of rhythm, melody, and harmony, and seeks to introduce music to a wider audience. Bartók as well spent much time composing graded pieces for beginning students, not only with his 44 Duets for two violins, but also the For Children series and Mikrokosmos, among others.


When two leading composers from the same nation spends so much effort to further the musical education of beginners, this is indeed worth our notice, and we begin to wonder if Bartók's desire to write his 44 Duos has deeper causes than just the immediate request from Erich Doflein. In addition to Doflein's request, we can infer other possible subconscious factors leading to Bartók's development of the duets. These include developing trends in artistic modernism, nationalism, searching for new ways to reach the public, and by a desire to “elevate” folk music to art music.


Around the turn of the 20th century, Charles Rosen posits that western music reached a crisis of musical tonality, which had repercussions in its function in society and the musical marketplace. Rosen attributes this to the professionalization and commercialization of music, a process which began centuries before. These processes changes the very definition of music: something which once belonged to everyone instead turns into a commodity to be sold by a professional (the musician) to a client (the public)6. Professionals seek to distinguish themselves in the marketplace by selling a better or unique product, in order to separate themselves from what is already there. Because of this, the composing of new music turned into


a clearly defined activity capable of producing ever-new and original works that would render the style of the previous generation out of date...this commercialization may be reasonably credited with the extraordinary and rapid development of secular music from Bach to Schoenberg...By 1900, this pretence [sic.] was subject to strains that were about to tear it apart. High art – conceived in professional and commercial terms – demands that the public refuse to buy whatever does not come directly out of the artist's inner nature by a kind of necessity.7


In much the same way that the Apple corporation needs to release newer, faster versions of iPhones in order to keep in business, the professionalization of music means that composers and musicians need to keep releasing new and original content in order to keep working. Simply put, each generation of composers needs to keep developing in style to find their unique voice and separate them from the previous generation. And just as Apple tells us that the newest iPhone is better and more relevant than the previous version, composers and musicians must convince us that their pieces and their performances are at least as relevant and necessary as the music already in existence. For hundreds of years this development in originality manifested itself in increasingly chromatic and tonally complex music. However, after Wagner, it seemed as if the limits of this approach had been reached.


Rosen goes on to identify Hindemith's Gebrauchsmusik and Schoenberg's Society for the Private Performance of Music as two possible solutions to this crisis. Other composers found different ways to deal with this problem. Erik Satie experimented in “Furniture Music”, members of Les Six and composers like Schulhoff and Gershwin sought to integrate more popular idioms such as jazz into their compositions. As time went on, the efforts to find unique approaches became even more extreme – John Cage found his original voice by teaching us that any sound can be music, the minimalists of the 1960s and 1970s showed us that thematic development is not necessary to create large musical structures, and so on. Although it is far beyond the scope of this paper, the entire history of 20th century music can be viewed from this vantage point and seen as a series of new efforts in originality.


But in Hungary at the turn of the 20th century, composers like Bartók and Kodály were already dealing with the same limitations of tonality, and thus their own function in society. Consciously or not, they came up a with a completely different solution: blurring the lines between art music and folk music. By “elevating” folk music to the level of art music, they chose to use ideas which belonged to everyone (folk melodies) and transform them into a professionally sold commodity (art music). The pedagogical tools that they created such as the Mikrokosmos, 44 Duos, and Kodály method, help build that bridge between these two styles. In order to reach their Hungarian public with the art music they had to offer, they sought to educate and inspire them through the medium of folk music, leading them towards the “higher” forms of musical art. Kodaly clearly stated this idea in his essay A Hundred Year Plan from 1947:


The aim: Hungarian musical culture. The means: making the reading and

writing of music general, through the schools. At the same time the

awakening of a Hungarian musical approach in the training of both artists

and audience. The raising of Hungarian public taste in music and a

continual progress towards what is better and more Hungarian. To make

the masterpieces of world literature public property, to convey them to

people of every kind and rank.8


Unlike Schoenberg, who tried to remove the commercial element of music altogether with his Society for Private Musical Performances, Bartók and Kodály sought to turn the public into a group of educated and enthusiastic buyers in the music market. Folk music was the obvious medium for them to use in this endeavor. It consisted of a rich untapped source of material, it often used pentatonic scales which are easy to sing, and fit in with already developing historical trends of nationalism and pride of country. By giving the public a familiar entry into an unfamiliar marketplace, the public could find their way in an increasingly complex sound world. This need for musical education and inspiration was summed up by Kodály when he said


Our task can be summarized in one word: education. [...] To drive the

Hungarian masses closer to higher art music. [...] To make the thirsty souls

know and love the great works of musical art…”9.



Perhaps most importantly though, this fusion of folk music and art music created a totally new style of composition, allowing for more than just the normal major and minor modes. They could therefore fit Rosen's criteria of “producing ever-new and original works that would render the style of the previous generation out of date”.10 Even in the 44 Duos, some of Bartók's simplest and most straightforward compositions, these modes and tonalities were a fresh approach in art music, and led Erich Doflein to write to Bartók that these pieces were not as simple as they first seemed, but rather “naturally demand a very fine ear.”11


Bartók and Kodály's approach to composition use Hungarian folk tunes in a way that even Brahms and Liszt did not, and they gave a new identity and direction to the development of Hungarian music. The 44 Duos are structurally among the simplest of Bartók's works along with his other pedagogical pieces. They are therefore able to serve as an introduction to his style by providing pieces of study for children and amateurs, and since they are short works, can easily be included on concert programs.


Place in current musical climate

The musical climate has changed immeasurably since the composition of the 44 Duos in 1931. Bartók's use of modal harmonies and unequal rhythms, while still maintaining their emotional power, no longer seem incredibly new to our ear. Music has since become even more extreme in harmony, color, and rhythm. Even some of Bartók's most complex compositions have found their way into films, TV shows, and even video games (a famous application is the 3rd movement of the Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta's use in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining.) His Concerto for Orchestra, string quartets, and piano works are staples of the repertoire, and are heard regularly in concerts and recordings. Because of this, the 44 Duos' role as an introduction to Bartók's music for students and amateurs is no longer as necessary as it was when the pieces were first composed. People interested in hearing Bartók's music need only to go to their phones to find one of thousands of recordings. Indeed, many people may have already heard a Bartók work without knowing it was his.


However, great works of art speak to all ages and have something unique to say regardless of period. While the 44 Duos may not need to serve as an introduction to Bartók's style to audiences, they still introduce many concepts of structure, articulation, phrasing, and performance to the musician. They remain great pieces of music and have not lost their pedagogical purpose to teach “real music” to beginning players, to help with the development of different kinds of sound and articulation, and with the study of complex rhythms. They also serve as a wonderful bridge between performance practices in art music and folk music. Classical musicians can learn a lot from the techniques of folk musicians, and the roots of these pieces in folk melody make them obvious choices for the study of these techniques.


Thoughts on study and performance


  • Performance questions regarding the differences between folk music and art music


One of the missions of Bartók and Kodály was to raise of folk music to the level of art music, and the relationship between folk and art music is a the central points of study for these pieces. Since the style of composition combines elements from both traditions, we must ask ourselves how to decide which style takes precedent in a performance. Do we as performers choose for a more folk style of playing, leaning into the roots of the compositions? Or do we instead take the material and transform it into something new – seeing the same folk melodies through a different lens, as it were? What middle ground is necessary in order to find the maximum and most effective expression of these pieces? And which elements from which styles should be chosen to create the most effective performance? In the end, the answers to these questions will vary with each performer, as the variety of different possible performances lends itself to the inexhaustible originality of the works. But the student will gain much from studying and comparing both traditions, and this study will help him or her find a unique voice in a performance of the Duos.


  • Objective vs. subjective rhythm


I have found that central to any comparison between folk and art music is a fundamental difference in experience of rhythm. Because folk music is not written down, folk performers have a very different experience of performance than “art-music” performers. Art music performers are able to read an entire musical score vertically and horizontally, and can see an entire piece of music without hearing it, having a simultaneous view of many different moments in time. Folk music performers, on the other hand, can only experience a piece one note at a time, as they are played, since there is no score for reference.


We can liken this difference to the experience of looking at a map of a city, as opposed to actually walking down the streets. Art music performers have the complete map in front of them, and are taught to plan their route before they go. This creates a possibility for an incredibly structured experience. Rhythm can be seen as well as felt on this map, and the regularity of the bar lines exist on the page objectively and independently of the performer. This leads to the feeling of a constantly steady pulse. Since the pulse already exists on the page and since music notation defines each beat as being regular in time, the musicians only have to follow the pulse and realize what is already there. But folk musicians have no written score, and they have no map. They are just walking down the streets as they go. Rhythm cannot be seen, only experienced, and because of this pulse becomes a subjective experience rather than one which exists independently of the performer. Just as one might slow down one's walking pace to admire something in sight, the performer might stretch the pulse during a phrase to point out a particularly expressive note. In place of structure and objectivity, we instead have variability and subjectivity.


In his field notes on folk melodies, Bartok tried to notate these subtle differences by making many markings to signify slightly longer or shorter values for certain notes, slightly higher or lower pitches, all because there was no adequate notation system available. Since folk music had not been written down before then, it was newly created each time, rather than being reproduced from a mold.



  • The parlando-rubato style


One of the best examples of a subjective rhythmic feeling is the rubato and so-called “parlando-rubato” style inherent in many folk melodies. Balint Sárosi says in his study of Folk Music, Hungarian Musical Idiom, that melodies marked “parlando”, or ones that have a primarily speaking character are to be played “in a tempo without the even pulsation of a dance or a march, the laws of the speaking voice prevailing in it.”12 Fluctuations in rhythms can be much more free than classical musicians are used to hearing, and melodies are sung much as a poem might be recited, with stress and emphasis on certain words stretching out the rhythm when required, sometimes even at the expense of the meter.


In the 44 Duos, Bartók notates this style by writing “rubato”, “poco rubato”, or “parlando” in some of the pieces. #28 (Sorrow) has “poco rubato” in the tempo marking, #33 (Harvest Song) has “Piu mosso, parlando” written at measure 6. However, #11 (Cradle Song) has “(rubato)” written only above the first violin part, suggesting that it is only the first violin which should play in the parlando-rubato style.


To understand this style, Sárosi suggests “much practice and observation – one has to feel the style of parlando singing.”13 It is not something that can be quantified, rather it must be felt and experienced. Listening to source recordings, folk musicians, and recordings of Bartók himself will therefore be the best aid to the student of the 44 Duos. We should not expect that there is a “correct” answer to playing specific rubato rhythms. Sárosi warns us that “The same singer will perform the same song on different occasions and under the influence of different moods in different ways.”14 And Bartók himself says that even in art music “the composer himself, when he is the performer of his own composition, does not always perform his work in exactly the same way. Why? Because he lives; because perpetual variability is a trait of a living creature's character.”15


  • Sources and recordings


In order to immerse oneself in the folk style and in this rhythmic approach to the 44 Duos, there are many valuable recordings. Perhaps the most enlightening is Bartók's own recording of his Petite Suite, released on Hungaroton's “Bartók the Pianist” (Hungaroton catalog #32790). The suite consists of Bartók's piano arrangement of six of the violin duets - #28 (Sorrow), #32 (dance from Maramaros), #38 (Romanian Whirling Dance), #43 (Pizzicato), #16 (Burlesque), and #36 (Bagpipes). The piano version of these works is more technically demanding and complex than the violin duets, but the recording still sheds much light on Bartók's own ideas of rubato and phrasing. The parlando rubato style is on full display here in the first movement of the work where Bartók lengthens or shortens the eight-note values quite drastically according to his whims.


The Hungarian folk music ensemble Muszikas have also recorded three of the violin duets on their Bartók Album, released by Hannibal Records. These are #32 (Dance of Maramaros), #28 (Sorrow), and #44 (Transylvanian Dance). It is very interesting to hear these pieces approached by real folk musicians, and the duets they have chosen are ones that show a particular connection to their own Hungarian folk music. Maramaros and Transylvania, while no longer in Hungary, both contain a large Hungarian-speaking populations. Sorrow is derived from a folk song which Bartók collected in the county of Tolna (135km south of Budapest) and it is interesting to compare the parlando rubato style in Muszikas' recording of this melody with Bartók's. Muszikas' recording, while still free, is surprisingly much stricter than Bartók's own version, but when they do take liberties with the timing, they often do so in completely different ways than Bartók, rushing over notes that Bartók lingered on, and vice versa.


Vera Lampert's catalogue of Bartók's field recordings is also an invaluable resource to the performer of these works. This catalogue contains a list of all of the melodies that Bartók recorded on his travels, along with the English translation of the first verses of the songs. (Comparing music and text, although a separate topic unfortunately beyond the scope of this study, is of great interest as well, and can greatly affect the shape of a performance. When one learns, for example, that the text of the eight-note figure in bar 3 of Duo #6 (Hungarian Song) is “chigirigiri” - essentially a nonsense word, one is inclined to play this figure in a much more playful manner than if it were a normal song text.)


Included with Lampert's book is a CD of the surviving field recordings that Bartók made on his travels, including the surviving source recordings for the 44 Duos. These are very scratchy and in some cases it is nearly impossible to make out the music. But enough still comes across to the listener to give a very good sense of how this music was sung and performed. The recordings of instrumental works are also very interesting, as they give an idea of the tone colors of certain instruments (such as the Hungarian Long Flute), as well as articulation and phrasing conventions that would otherwise not be available to us.


Finally, a video recording of the 44 Duos was made by violinists Sandor Vegh and Alberto Lysy, this video is currently available to stream on Youtube. Sandor Vegh grew up in Transylvania, and folk music was an important part of his family life, so his approaches to the folk melodies in these duets are especially important to us. In addition, Vegh was a close friend of Bartók, and worked with him extensively on many of Bartók's works16. Therefore, Vegh's ideas about phrasing, articulations, and bowing techniques, almost certainly derived from his work with the composer, show us a lot about the musical intentions behind these pieces, and the fact that we have video to go with the audio gives us even more to learn from. Vegh's approach to certain shorter articulations are perhaps one of the most interesting aspects of this performance. Although he does sometimes play short when there are no dots written (as in duos #27 or #31), he usually plays these figures on the string at the tip, and tends only lifts the bow when Bartók specifically writes dots (as in #16).


 We must remember that since the 44 Duos are arrangements of folk songs, but not folk songs themselves, they will therefore combine elements of both folk music and art music. Performance traditions in folk and art music are very different, and the performer of these works must choose which elements to incorporate from which traditions based on study, experience, and practice. Although there can be no “correct” or “incorrect” interpretation of these works, any thoughtful musician must search for a personal answer to the many questions of style raised above.


  • Differences in notated and performed rhythms


When developing one's own parlando-rubato style and when studying these rhythms, we must also take into consideration that Bartók himself sometimes revisited and improved upon his own notation. This is perhaps most obviously reflected in his notation of the opening theme of his Rumanian Dances, which exists in two versions, one noticeably more complex than the other.


This example shows us that the notated rhythms in Bartók's music are often approximations of folk idioms. When hearing recordings of folk musicians themselves, one notices certain idiomatic tendencies, among which are sometimes overdotting and a type of playing similar to the notes inegales of the baroque period. Bartók called these mannerisms “characteristic peculiarities...such as, for example, the vocal portamento, irregular rhythm, and so forth, none of which can be recorded with the aid of conventional music signs.”17 In his field notes he added many extra symbols for pitch, timing, and wrote copious notes about the “characteristic peculiarities” of each melody. We must therefore recognize that when we are presented with a folk melody transcription, it is only an approximation of the desired sounds in a written notation. But we cannot forget that many of these sounds were indeed un-notateable. Our sheet music is a series of signs and directions which only helps us towards the music itself.


The folk melody which is used for duet #44 (Transylvanian Dance) is one of the best examples of these “characteristic peculiarities”. The notated melody consists mainly of a downwards run of equally-valued sixteenth notes.


However, the field recording of this melody shows that the sixteenth notes were in fact originally played unequally, with the first and third notes of each group lasting slightly longer, creating what can almost be described as a baroque inegal feeling, or a jazz “swing”. In the recording of this duet by the Hungarian folk ensemble Muszikas on their Bartók Album, they recreate this swing. The violinist Sandor Vegh's recording with Alberto Lysy also imitates the same type of swing in the sixteenth notes, confirming that this was an inherent rhythmic trait of the tune.


  • Differences in tempi


Bartók's metronome markings can serve as a guide to his music, however, Bartók himself frequently plays his own music at a different tempo than he notated. As performers then, we must ask ourselves how much freedom we can take while still keeping with the spirit of Bartók's notation?


To make matters even more complicated in the Duos, the field recordings which serve as source material are often sung and played in drastically different tempi than Bartók writes in the duets. Bartók marks the “New Year's Song” (Duo #21) as Adagio, quarter note=60. However, his field recording of this song is marked quarter note =88. Does the knowledge of this difference affect our performance of the work? Is the recording we have only one version of many different tempi in which the song was sung? Was the singer nervous for being recorded and therefore sung faster than they would have? Or was Bartók himself only suggesting a possible tempo for performance of the duet?


In some cases, as in “Sorrow” (Duo #28), the answer is obvious. Bartók has transformed this song so much that the original meter of 4/4 (quarter note=70) of the folk song has become a 3 /4 (quarter note = 60) in the Duo version. The transformation of the song into Bartók's style is so drastic and shows us that the Duo is in fact a completely different piece than the original folk song. Thus, the tempo we choose should be closer to Bartók's marking than to the original folk song.


However, with many of the other Duos, this transformation is not as obvious or as drastic as in Duo #28. Duet #6 (Hungarian Song) is marked quarter = 116 in the Duo version, but quarter = 106 in the field recording. Although at first glance that seems very close, it is almost a 10% deviation in tempo, which can have quite an effect on the character of the piece. So as performers we must again ask ourselves what this difference means.


Luckily, in his preface to the Mikrokosmos, Bartók addresses the question of metronome markings in his pedagogical works:

Many of the first pieces may be played slower or faster than indicated. As progress is made deviation from the tempo given should not be encouraged and in the fifth and sixth books [the last two volumes of Mikrokosmos,] the indications should be adhered to.18


Bartók in fact here asks us to trust his markings and to use them to create a musical character. This implies that many of these tempo markings are in fact consciously different from the source material, and that the character of the pieces is thus transformed in their arrangement.


  • Articulation


The 44 Duos also provide us with a library of Bartók's musical phonemes, and how they might be used in his music. Bartók is very specific in his use of articulation.  In the Duos he uses repeated dashes to suggest a “parlando rubato” style (as in Duo #11); and makes differences between dashes, accents, and accents with dashes “hats”, sforzandi, sforzandi with dashes, and dashes with dots, to name a few. Szigeti also discusses this wide array of articulation markings as a tool for the young learner, saying that for the student,


Bow articulation, the use of the lower part of the bow, of minute stoppings on the strings, or of minute liftings off the strings,...can and will be benefited by these technically deceptively simple pieces, precisely because their very essence 'forbids' anything less than natural articulation and bow phrasing.19

He goes on:

whereas in some repertoire piece by one of the masters [a] pupil is inclined to disregard the articulation...he will be unable to play havoc with Bartók's phrases, since these are so explicitly dependent upon just the right use of bow that he obviously had in mind.20


The shortness and comparative ease of the music, combined with Bartók's meticulous notation makes visible to the performer many things that are only implied in other music. Two note slurs often have dots at the end, demanding a lift and stopping of the sound which is only implied in other music.

The student cannot get away with ignoring these markings as they might in another piece, since every note counts for much more in these short works. A close adherence to the written articulation in the 44 Duos will open up a world of expression for the student, and allow him or her to approach Bartók's larger violin works with much more ease and style.


Final thoughts

In addition to being wonderful character pieces, Bartók's 44 Duos for two violins still have a lot to teach about Bartók's own style and the folk music idiom to violinists of all levels. In my own experience playing and teaching these pieces they have helped evolve my approach to rhythm and phrasing, which has become much more free. I have seen the same seeds of development in students, who were shocked to hear how much rhythmic freedom Bartók himself took in his recording of the Petite Suite. The rhythmic freedom I have found and new use of rubato has helped me not only in performances of other music by Bartók, but indeed has given me a new sense of freedom in all music, beyond Bartók alone.


The Duos are easy to add to a young violinist's repertoire and study plan. Since they are so short and not very technically demanding, they can be easily included in a youngster's practice schedule without diverting too much time from etudes, scales, and other repertoire. I have found it effective when these pieces are taught in a group or masterclass setting with many different violinists playing one or two of the Duos. Students can then be exposed to much more of this material, and do not have to invest as much time themselves – they learn from each others' experiences. And when the students' own performances are juxtaposed with Bartók's own recordings or his field recordings, they are not only confronted with many new stylistic ideas, but are also able to hear voices reaching out to them from the past. This humanizes the music and Bartók himself in a way that is seldom possible with composers who are no longer living.


A study of these pieces and of Bartók's notation of folk melodies has led me to other interesting discoveries as well. I have since found Kurtag's own musical notation to be even more influenced by folk melody than I originally thought.


Many of Kurtag's notational symbols and approaches to timing derive from the “subjective” feeling of rhythm inherent in the parlando-rubato style, and some of his own signs come directly from Bartók's notes. But most importantly, the study of the 44 Duos has led me to release myself from the supremacy of the written page and helped me towards what Bartók called the “perpetual variability” and vitality of live music. I hope that a similar study of these works will do the same for other violinists of all ages and levels.




Bartók, Béla. Béla Bartók Essays, selected and edited by Benjamin Suchoff. Faber and Faber Limited, 1976


Lampert, Vera. Folk Music in Bartók's Compositions, A Source Catalog. (G. Henle Verlag, Germany, 2008)


Nemes, László. Notes for speech Kodály's Concept of Safeguarding the Folk Music Heritage of Hungarian People. With permission of László Nemes


Rosen, Charles. Schoenberg. (Fontana, 1976)


Sárosi, Bálint. Folk Music: Hungarian Musical Idiom. Translated by Maria Steiner. Franklin Printing House, 1986


Szigeti, Joseph. Szigeti on the Violin. (Dover Publications, Inc. 1979)


Elizabeth Mortimer. Sandor Vegh and the Camerata Academica.https://www.mortimer.at/resources/Sandor_Vegh_Camerata_Academia.html.en Last accessed 23/1/2019


Vikárius, László. Translated by Richard Robinson. CD liner notes to Bartók: Sonata for Solo Violin

- 44 Duos, Barnabas Kelemen & Katalin Kokas, BMC Records 2006


Vikárius, László. CD liner notes to Forty-Four Duos - Hungarian Folksongs by Béla Bartók/Kelemen/Kokas/Juhasz/Kocsis Hungaroton records 2008

1Szigeti p.216

2Ibid. p.217

3Ibid. p.217

4Vikárius 2006

5Vikárius 2008

6Rosen pp.75-76

7Ibid. p.76

  8From Kodaly's essay A Hundred Year Plan, quoted in Nemes

9From Kodály's manifesto Internal Mission of Music, quoted in Nemes

10Rosen p.76

11Vikárius 2008

12Sárosi p.36

13Sárosi p.37

14Ibid. p.37

15Bartók, in lecture on Mechanical Music, p.298

16Mortimer, last accessed 23/1/19

17Bartók, in essay on Hungarian Music, p.4

18Bartók, p.424

19Szigeti p. 217

20Szigeti p. 217

Duo #6, 1st violin part, opening measures.  The text of the folk song translates to To the slippers of the miss, chigirigiri / A splinter got into her little toe, bagaragari.

Bartok's original and revised notations of the opening melody of the Rumanian Dances

Duo #33, opening measures.  Sandor Vegh plays these ben marcato notes short, but at the tip on the string

Kurtag, Brefs Messages, opening of 2nd movement. Note the many ways that Kurtag suggests a parlando rubato style including in the tempo marking, crescendi with arrows signifying forward motion, commas signifying breath, and           which is a marking Bartok used in his notation signifying "hold this a little longer than notated".

Duo #28, Sorrow, opening measures

Duo #16, opening measures.  Vegh here lifts the bow after each dot

Duo #11, Cradle Song, note the key signature of Bb and Db in violin 1

Duo #11, Cradle Song, opening measures

Duo #33, Harvest Song, measures 6-10

For Children, Book 1 #26, opening measures


Duo #44, 1st violin part, main theme

Duo #19, A Fairy Tale, opening measures

Duo #35, 1st violin part, measures 21-27