Bartók, Béla: Contrasts op. BB116 (1938) 18'

for violin, clarinet, and piano

This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.

World Premiere
New York, NY
Béla Bartók, pft / József Szigeti, vln / Benny Goodman, cl /

Repertoire Note  
Contrasts grew from a six-minute, two-movement commission by Benny Goodman to become a seventeen-minute masterpiece that can be described as “a kind of deliciously filtered Hungarian jazz”. Particularly intriguing is the middle movement, entitled ‘Relaxation’, where Bartók further explores the notions of static music that he had already been developing for over a decade. Stravinsky gave his answer to Contrasts seven years later in the Ebony Concerto, which Goodman also recorded, with Stravinsky conducting.

Note by Malcolm Gillies

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