Edvard Grieg’s only Cello Sonata remains one of the best kept secrets among cellists. Grieg wrote it for his brother John, an accomplished player of the instrument. Though not a string player himself, by seeking advice during the compositional process Grieg was able to create an exhilarating piece that even advanced amateurs will be delighted to discover. Our edition also contains an early Intermezzo of 1866 as well as the first publication of Grieg’s own transcription of the Allegretto from his Violin Sonata op. 45, written as a birthday serenade for his brother John.
- Violoncello Sonata a minor op. 36
- Allegretto after op. 45 E major
- Intermezzo a minor
From the autumn of 1880 to the spring of 1882, after working in Christiania (now Oslo) for many years, Edvard Grieg accepted the position of conductor to the Harmonien concert society in Bergen. As a temporary measure he lived there with his wife Nina in his parents’ former home, now occupied by his brother John (his parents had both passed away in 1875). John, who was three … more
About the composer
Most important Norwegian composer of the nineteenth century and promoter of Norwegian folk music. His lyrical character pieces in particular are well known.
|1843||Born in Bergen on June 15, the son of a merchant and British consul; early piano lessons with his mother, who was a pianist.|
|1858–62||Studies at the Leipzig Conservatory.|
|1862||Concerts in Norway.|
|1863||Copenhagen, with the support of Niels W. Gade.|
|from 1864||Interest in Norwegian folk music, which finds its way into his compositions.|
|1866||Breakthrough with a concert of Norwegian music. Conductor of the Philharmonic Society.|
|1867||The first of a total of ten volumes of Lyric Pieces for piano, Op. 12, with relatively simple piano settings.|
|1868/69||Composition of the Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 16, which is based on Schumann’s piano concerto.|
|1869||“25 Norwegian Folk Melodies and Dances,” Op. 17, for piano.|
|1873||Begins work on the opera “Olav Trygvason,” Op. 50, after Bjørnson, which is never completed.|
|1874||Composition stipend from the state.|
|1874/75||Composition of incidental music to Ibsen’s “Peer Gynt,” Op. 23, the basis for the Peer Gynt Suites.|
|1876||Attends the premiere of Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen” in Bayreuth.|
|1880–82||Conductor of the “Harmonien” musical society in Bergen. Thereafter he accepted no other positions.|
|1883||Visit to Bayreuth; he hears Wagner’s “Parsifal.”|
|1884||Composition of “From Holberg’s Time,” Op. 40, his most popular work.|
|from 1885||He moves into his villa “Troldhaugen” (near Bergen). Composition and revision of older works in spring and summer, concert tours in fall and winter.|
|1891||Composition of the “Lyric Suite,” Op. 54, orchestrated in 1905.|
|1907||Death in Bergen on September 4.|
About the authors
The publisher here has done the public a great service in making available these unfamiliar works by Norway’s most illustrious composer. … Whilst these three works are unlikely to usurp the popularity of those that already hold a grip on the established repertoire there is surely an opportunity here for cellists to give them an occasional airing.
Bei Urtextausgaben von Werken des Konzertrepertoires sind Fingersätze nicht angebracht. Für einmal wird hier dieses Prinzip zu Recht umgestossen: Jede Cellistin, jeder Cellist wird mit Interesse David Geringas über die Schulter gucken und sich von den klaren Bezeichnungen, die alles Überflüssige vermeiden, gerne überzeugen lassen.
Henle Urtext, on the other hand, are renowned for their faithful and well researched editions and with this new offering of the sonata, we are indeed presented with a refreshing and authentic score, laid out with trademark simplicity and subtle guidance.
Entre violoncellistes, elle est toujours un “bon tuyau”: l’unique Sonate pour violoncelle d’Edvard Grieg, … cette Sonate pleine de brio représente une authentique découverte pour l’amateur avancé.
Up to now there have been only two options when buying a score of Grieg’s Cello Sonata (dedicated to his older brother John, a talented cellist:) … Now there is a third and best choice – Henle Urtext.
[The Strad, 2006)