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Kodály Zoltán: Adagio
per viola e orchestra d'archi
score and parts
As Kodály confessed later: '”it is a very old work of mine; it was composed at a time when I did not know anything about folk songs, nothing more than was in the air and got to the surface - thus any conclusion could be drawn from this; how I would have composed later if, for example, I did not go to the country, or if there were no folk songs or I did not get in contact with them. Nothing of Hungarian folk music can be seen in this Adagio yet.'
At the same time quite a few stylistic characteristics of the future composer are apparent, especially in the fabric but perhaps also in sonority, harmonies and tonality. Although it would be difficult to prove, he probably knew something of Debussy's art, which became so important for him as well as for Bartók a few years later almost at the same time when discovering folk song. The form has a simple triple division - a frequent structure in his later works. In this respect Kodály was a composer with a classicising disposition who was strongly attached to traditions. (András Wilheim)