VIOLIN CONCERTO FOR VIOLIN AND FULL ORCHESTRA — Robert Rollin
02: Blues
03: Barcarolle
04: Rhapsody

The Violin Concerto was originally premiered in Guadalajara, Mexico by Gwyneth Rollin, the composer’s wife, in two performances with the Filharmónica de Jalisco, José Guadalupe Flores, conductor. It is in three contrasting movements, each with its own solo violin cadenza. The first movement, “Blues,” incorporates original themes with two old American folk songs, “Every Night When the Sun Goes Down,” and “Careless Love.” The second, “Barcarolle,” a Venetian boat song, employs original themes and an old Sicilian lullaby with counterpoints and harmonization by Rollin. It has the unusual feature of ending with a solo violin cadenza fading into silence. The third movement, “Rhapsody,” beginning with original themes, leads into paraphrases of two Russian/Jewish folk songs (“Margaritkes” and “Die Mezinke Oysgegeben”), one very sad and wistful about a young maiden deserted by her lover, and the other, a rousing dance by a proud father as he gives away his daughter in marriage and celebrates with abandon in a large catered party. There follows a cyclical return to opening material of the first movement interspersed with fragments of the two folk songs. A virtuoso solo violin cadenza ensues, followed by an exciting closing tutti suddenly cut off by six powerful syncopated chords for full orchestra.

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