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  • chrisdumigan

Edward Grieg  : Two Elegiac Melodies Op34: for guitar duo : Bergmann

Edward Grieg, arranged by Christina Hemmingsen

Bergmann Edition: Score and separate parts (15, 8, and 8 pages respectively)


As any of you regular readers may know, Grieg, is one of my very favourite composers, a lot of whose music I have myself arranged for 2 guitars, but here are as pair of lovely pieces I haven’t yet done! Originally written for string orchestra in 1880, it is here arranged for two guitars by Christina Hemmingsen.

The first of the two Hjertesar ( The Wounded Heart) has both guitars with a sixth string dropped to D and is immediately recognizable in its harmony work as Grieg, and its steady pulse is divided equally to the two guitars so that neither is playing an accompaniment , but rather the two guitars are treated as one large one. Then at bar 17 guitar one takes over the off – beat chordal accompaniment while guitar two takes over the lows voiced melody , after which the opening idea returns but this time in a much more dramatic way with very full chordal writing  leading to a fortissimo, which then dies away to a pianissimo final chord of D Major.

The final piece Varen ( The Last Spring ) is now set in G Major  and begins with some harmonics on guitar one, before introducing the opening melody in one and sometimes two voices accompanied by  a nice set of harmonies on guitar 2 , which as usual with Grieg are imaginative and very suited to the guitar. This piece is quite a bit longer than the opening and goes gracefully on its way until closing on a brief coda based on an extended arpeggio of G on both guitars.

I liked this pair very much indeed. They are not more than moderate in difficulty and their musical style is friendly and original at the same time. Definitely one to search out!


Chris Dumigan  


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