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Michael Tippett: Ritual Dances: Orchestra

Miniature Score | Sheet Music & Songbooks
Instrumentation Orchestra, Choir and 4 Soloists Ad. Lib.
Composer Michael Tippett
Publisher Ernst Eulenburg u. Co.

Tippett's decision to extract the four Ritual Dances from his opera 'The Midsummer Marriage' as a self-contained concert suite reflects the fact that the medium of dance was always present in his conception of the opera.

From the start, there was to be an interaction within the opera between the real world and the world of mythology, partly Greek, partly Celtic. This mythological element culminates, in the finished opera, in the 'Ritual Dances' of Acts 2 and 3. Tippett himself described his opera as a kind of elaborate 'L'après midi d'un faune;, in which the 'Ritual Dances' display a powerful sexual energy, though of a very different kind from Debussy's voluptuous langour.

Composition of The Midsummer Marriage occupied Tippett for six years from 1946 to 1952. The first performance of the Ritual Dances as a concert suite was given in Basel on 13 February 1953 by the Basel Kammerorchester conducted by Paul Sacher, and preceded the premiere of the complete opera by two years. Today the Ritual Dances rival the Concerto for Double String Orchestra (ETP 1331) as Tippett's most widely-performed orchestral work.

Series Eulenburg Miniature Scores
Subtitle from the opera The Midsummer Marriage
Store Sheet Music & Songbooks
Product Format Miniature Score
Release Date 2007
Pages 140
ISMN 9790200223828
ISBN 9783795764180
Edition Number ETP 8066
Catalog No. SCHETP8066
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