Bachianas Brasileiras
The Bachianas Brasileiras constitute a series of nine suites by the Brazil
Brazil , officially the Federative Republic of Brazil , is the largest country in South America. It is the world's fifth largest country, both by geographical area and by population with over 192 million people...

ian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos
Heitor Villa-Lobos
Heitor Villa-Lobos was a Brazilian composer, described as "the single most significant creative figure in 20th-century Brazilian art music". Villa-Lobos has become the best-known and most significant Latin American composer to date. He wrote numerous orchestral, chamber, instrumental and vocal works...

, written for various combinations of instruments and voices between 1930 and 1945. They represent not so much a fusion between Brazilian folk and popular music on the one hand, and the style of Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach
Johann Sebastian Bach was a German composer, organist, harpsichordist, violist, and violinist whose sacred and secular works for choir, orchestra, and solo instruments drew together the strands of the Baroque period and brought it to its ultimate maturity...

 on the other, as an attempt freely to adapt a number of Baroque harmonic and contrapuntal procedures to Brazilian music (Béhague 1994, 106; Béhague 2001). Most of the movements in each suite have two titles: one "Bachian" (Preludio, Fuga, etc.), the other Brazilian (Embolada, O canto da nossa terra, etc.).

The works are:

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 1

Scored for orchestra of cellos (1930):
  • Introdução (Embolada)
  • Prelúdio (Modinha)
  • Fuga (Conversa) (Conversation)

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 2

Scored for orchestra (1930). There are four movements, the third later transcribed for piano, and the others for cello and piano (Appleby 1988, 64–65).
  • Preludio (O canto do capadocio) [Despite the five translations—French, English, Italian, Spanish, and German—printed in the score, the composer's own notes on this movement make it clear that the meaning of capadocio is not "campagnard", "countryman", "campagnolo, etc., but rather "Teddy boy
    Teddy Boy
    The British Teddy Boy subculture is typified by young men wearing clothes that were partly inspired by the styles worn by dandies in the Edwardian period, styles which Savile Row tailors had attempted to re-introduce in Britain after World War II...

    " or "layabout" (Round 1989, 39).]
  • Aria (O canto da nossa terra)
  • Dansa (Lembrança do sertão)
  • Toccata (O trenzinho [misspelled in the score: "tremzinho"] do caipira: The Little Train of Caipira
    The Little Train of Caipira
    The Little Train of the Brasilian [sic] Countryman is the subtitle for the Toccata movement that concludes an orchestral suite written by Brazilian composer Heitor Villa-Lobos in 1930, titled Bachianas brasileiras No. 2. The Toccata is approximately 4 to 5 minutes long...


Bachianas Brasileiras No. 3

Scored for piano and orchestra (1938)
  • Preludio (Ponteio)
  • Fantasia (Devaneio) (Digression)
  • Aria (Modinha)
  • Toccata (Picapào)

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 4

Scored for piano (1930-41); orchestrated in 1942 (Preludio dedicated to Tomas Terán)
  • Preludio (Introdução)
  • Coral (Canto do sertão)
  • Aria (Cantiga)
  • Danza (Mindinho) [Miudinho on p. 45 of the orchestra score, and in Villa-Lobos 1974, 190.]

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5

Scored for soprano and orchestra of cellos (1938/45).
  • Aria (Cantilena) (lyrics by Ruth V. Corrêa) (Later arranged for solo soprano with guitar accompaniment by Villa-Lobos). This Aria is Villa-Lobos's best-known work (Béhague 2001).
  • Dansa (Martelo) (lyrics by Manuel Bandeira
    Manuel Bandeira
    Manuel Carneiro de Sousa Bandeira Filho was a poet, literary critic, and translator.Bandeira wrote over 20 books of poetry and prose. In 1904, he found out that he suffered from tuberculosis, which encouraged him to move from São Paulo to Rio de Janeiro, because of Rio's tropical beach weather...


Bachianas Brasileiras No. 7

Scored for symphony orchestra (1942) (dedicated to Gustavo Capanevia)
  • Preludio (Ponteio)
  • Giga (Quadrilha caipira)
  • Tocata (Desafio)
  • Fuga (Conversa)

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 8

Scored for symphony orchestra (1944) (dedicated to Mindinha)
  • Preludio
  • Aria (Modinha)
  • Tocata (Catira batida)
  • Fuga (Also arranged for four-part a cappella choir.)

Bachianas Brasileiras No. 9

Scored for chorus or string orchestra (1945)
  • Prélude
  • Fugue

Villa-Lobos made a number of recordings of the Bachianas Brasileiras, including an integral recording of all nine compositions made in Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

 in the 1950s with the French National Orchestra for EMI
The EMI Group, also known as EMI Music or simply EMI, is a multinational music company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It is the fourth-largest business group and family of record labels in the recording industry and one of the "big four" record companies. EMI Group also has a major...

. These landmark recordings were issued in several configurations on LP, and later were reissued on CD. Other musicians, including Joan Baez
Joan Baez
Joan Chandos Baez is an American folk singer, songwriter, musician and a prominent activist in the fields of human rights, peace and environmental justice....

, Enrique Bátiz, Leonard Bernstein
Leonard Bernstein
Leonard Bernstein August 25, 1918 – October 14, 1990) was an American conductor, composer, author, music lecturer and pianist. He was among the first conductors born and educated in the United States of America to receive worldwide acclaim...

, Nelson Freire
Nelson Freire
Nelson Freire is a Brazilian classical pianist.Freire began playing the piano when he was three years old. He replayed from memory pieces his older sister had just performed. His teachers in Brazil were Nise Obino and Lucia Branco, former students of a pupil of Liszt. For his first public recital,...

, Werner Janssen
Werner Janssen
Hans-Werner Janssen was an American conductor of classical music, and composer of classical music and film scores.-Biography:...

, Isaac Karabtchevsky
Isaac Karabtchevsky
Isaac Karabtchevsky in São Paulo) is a brazilian conductor of russian jew ancestry. He studied music and conducting in Germany, where his teachers included Wolfgang Fortner, Pierre Boulez and Carl Ueter....

, Jesús López-Cobos
Jesús López-Cobos
Jesús López-Cobos is a Spanish conductor.López-Cobos was born in Toro, Zamora, Castile-León, Spain. He studied at Complutense University of Madrid and graduated with a degree in philosophy...

, Aldo Parisot
Aldo Parisot
Aldo Simoes Parisot is a Brazilian-born American cellist and cello teacher, was formerly a member of the Juilliard School faculty, and currently is serving as a professor of music at the Yale School of Music....

, Menahem Pressler
Menahem Pressler
Menahem Pressler is a German-born American pianist, founding member of the Beaux Arts Trio.-Professional career:...

, Mstislav Rostropovich
Mstislav Rostropovich
Mstislav Leopoldovich Rostropovich, KBE , known to close friends as Slava, was a Soviet and Russian cellist and conductor. He was married to the soprano Galina Vishnevskaya. He is widely considered to have been the greatest cellist of the second half of the 20th century, and one of the greatest of...

, Kenneth Schermerhorn
Kenneth Schermerhorn
Kenneth Dewitt Schermerhorn was an American composer and orchestra conductor, most notably for the Nashville Symphony.-Biography:Schermerhorn was born in Schenectady, New York, where he studied clarinet, violin, and trumpet in school. At age 14, he forged a baptismal certificate to appear older so...

, Felix Slatkin
Felix Slatkin
Felix Slatkin was an American violinist and conductor.-Biography:Slatkin was born in St. Louis, Missouri to a Jewish family originally named Zlotkin from areas of the Russian Empire now in Ukraine. He began studying the violin at the age of nine with Isadore Grossman...

, Leopold Stokowski
Leopold Stokowski
Leopold Anthony Stokowski was a British-born, naturalised American orchestral conductor, well known for his free-hand performing style that spurned the traditional baton and for obtaining a characteristically sumptuous sound from many of the great orchestras he conducted.In America, Stokowski...

, Michael Tilson Thomas
Michael Tilson Thomas
Michael Tilson Thomas is an American conductor, pianist and composer. He is currently music director of the San Francisco Symphony, and artistic director of the New World Symphony Orchestra.-Early years:...

, and Galina Vishnevskaya
Galina Vishnevskaya
Galina Pavlovna Vishnevskaya is a Russian soprano opera singer and recitalist who was named a People's Artist of the USSR in 1966.-Biography:...

 have subsequently recorded the music.

Because Villa-Lobos dashed off compositions in feverish haste and preferred writing new pieces to revising and correcting already completed ones, numerous slips of the pen, miscalculations, impracticalities or even impossibilities, imprecise notations, uncertainty in specification of instruments, and other problems inescapably remain in the printed scores of the Bachianas, and require performers to take unusual care to decipher what the composer actually intended. In the frequent cases where both the score and the parts are wrong, the recordings made by the composer are the only means of determining what the composer actually intended (Round 1989, 35).

Other -ana works

For a list of other works in which a composer paid tribute to another composer by using their name in conjunction with the suffix -ana, see -ana.

Further reading

  • Arcanjo, Loque. 2008. O ritmo da mistura e o compasso da história: o modernismo musical nas Bachianas Brasileiras de Heitor Villa-Lobos. Rio de Janeiro: E-papers. ISBN 9788576501640.
  • Nóbrega, Adhemar. 1976. As Bachianas brasileiras de Villa-Lobos, second edition. [Rio de Janeiro]: Museu Villa-Lobos.
  • Palma, Enos da Costa, and Edgard de Brito Chaves Júnior. 1971. As Bachianas brasileiras de Villa-Lobos. Rio de Janeiro, Companhia Editôra Americana.
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.