Elegia & Reverie

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Price £8.50

Bottesini's Elegia and Reverie are at the very heart of the solo double bass repertoire and are ideal for bassists who have progressed through the exam grades and are looking for music which includes more of the solo register of the instrument. These new editions by David Heyes have transposed each into lower keys to make them more accessible for less advanced bassists.

Elegia has been transposed down a perfect 4th and there are various bowing suggestions and one passage which can also be played an octave higher than written. A number of harmonic flourishes are included, possible even at about grade 6 ability level, and students will relish the challenge to play in higher registers and to explore the cantabile and sonorous possibilities of the double bass.

Reverie has been transposed down a perfect 5th and makes effective use of the lower register with the occasional foray into thumb position. There are musical and technical challenges for the younger bassist and both pieces are ideal as study or recital repertoire.


"...The primary benefit for learning these pieces in transposition is to limit the time spent in the uppermost positions of the instrument. Higher note passages tend not to leave basic thumb position, and if passages do ascend further, harmonics can be used. David Heyes provides logical and musical bowings throughout. In instances with an extended slurred passage, he offers an additional bowing with fewer note groupings. No fingerings are provided; this exclusion allows freedom for the teacher and student to come up with tailor-made solutions...It is an advantage that a student might be able to study Bottesini sooner thanks to the work of David Heyes. Chances are that if this edition is played well, the next step is the real thing." [ISB Bass World / Philip Alejo]

"How he bewildered us by playing all sorts of melodies in flute like harmonics, as though he had a hundred nightingales caged in his double bass... I never wearied of his consummate grace and finish, his fatal precision, his heavenly tone, his fine taste. One sometimes yearned for a touch of human imperfection, but he was like a dead shot; he never missed what he aimed at, and he never aimed at less than perfection." [H.Haweis, 1888]

Giovanni Bottesini was called the 'Paganini of the Double Bass' and was the finest double bass soloist of the 19th-century. He was born in Crema (Lombardy) on 24 December 1821 and studied at the double bass at the Milan Conservatoire with Luigi Rossi, alongside harmony and composition with Nicola Vaccai (1790-1848) and Francesco Basili (1767-1850). His remarkable career as a soloist began in 1839 and lasted fifty years, taking him to every corner of the world. From Italy, his travels took him to Cuba (1846), USA (1847), England (annually from 1849), Egypt, Ireland, France, Germany, Russia, Mexico, Spain, Belgium, Monte carlo and many other countries throughout a long and distinguished career.

Bottesini was also famous as a composer writing at least 13 operas (Cristoforo Colombo, 1847 / Il diavolo della notte, 1856 / Ali Baba, 1871 / Ero e Leandro, 1879), a Messa da Requiem (1880) and an oratorio, The Garden of Olivet (1887 - first performed at the Norwich Festival), works for orchestra, 11 string quartets, string quintets, songs and many virtuoso works for double bass. As a conductor he is remembered primarily for directing the first performance of Verdi's Aida in Cairo in 1871, but was also a repsected composer of Italian opera, including seasons in Mexico, Paris, Palermo, Barcelona, London, Buenos Aires and Parma.

Bottesini's music for double bass is still at the heart of the solo repertoire into the 21st-century, even though his orchestral and operatic music has generally fallen from favour, but his Elegia for double bass and piano is one of the most recorded works of the 20th-century.

Giovanni Bottesini died in Parma on 7 July 1889.

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Cat No. RM615
Supplier Code RM615
Price £8.50
ComposerGiovanni Bottesini
ArrangerDavid Heyes
CategoryDouble Bass & Piano
Difficulty level6 - 7
ISMN 979-0-57045-615-4
EAN-13 9790570456154
Weight 102 grams
Published 1st July 2013
Availability 3 in stock