Let’s talk about music from Romania! Georges Enesco (1881–1955) was a virtuoso violinist during his day, and also known for composing works that drew from his native Romania. The talented Enesco entered conservatory at the young age of seven. He is known primarily for his violin and piano sonatas, string quartets, symphonies, and opera. Most famous of all, though, are his Romanian Rhapsodies, specifically the first.
The Romanian Rhapsody #1 draws from folk tunes, using songs and dances popular in Romania. It is thought that Enesco also found inspiration in Liszt’s Hungarian Rhapsodies when writing this work. Does this piece sound folksy to you?
Enesco was not happy that his Romanian Rhapsodies became his most well-liked pieces as he considered them to be works of his youth.
Join me next time as we wrap up our look at nationalism in music!