Edvard Grieg (1843-1907)
Op.68, No.5 - Bådnlåt:
At the Cradle (Lyric Pieces)
Emir Gamsız, piano
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ABOUT THE WORK:
Op.68 Lullaby is one of the five compositions among Grieg's compositions having the title Bådnlåt, all essentially lullabies. Three are adaptations of folk songs, all appearing in his set of 19 folk song arrangements for piano, Op.66 (1896 - 1897), and one is this piece from Book 9 of his Lyric Pieces series. The fifth Bådnlåt is a transcription of this piano piece for strings. Grieg also wrote five other lullabies (some as songs), demonstrating he was not only fond of the genre, but always highly skilled at it. Lyric Pieces (Norwegian: Lyriske stykker) is a collection of 66 short pieces for solo piano written by Edvard Grieg. They were published in 10 volumes, from 1867 (Op.12) to 1901 (Op.71). The collection includes several of his best known pieces, such as Wedding Day at Troldhaugen (Bryllupsdag på Troldhaugen), To Spring (Til våren), March of the Trolls (Trolltog), and Butterfly (Sommerfugl). While he lived another decade after writing this Op.68, he never wrote another lullaby. In a way, Grieg, generally upbeat and light in his works, was the perfect composer for this kind of music. Here he presents a lovely, quite simple melody that is instantly recognizable as his own, mainly owing to the subtle harmonies that impart a slightly exotic Nordic character to the dreaminess and innocence of the melody. The brief middle section is playful, though gently so, and after a return of the lovely main theme, the music quietly ends. Lasting about two-and-a-half minutes, this piece is yet another example of the composer's melodic skills and deft ability to charm the ear with seemingly simple materials.