For Children, by Béla Bartók
piano pieces based on Hungarian and Slovakian folksongs
Selected pieces arranged as woodwind duos, trios, or quartets by John W. Pratt and presented in multiple editions, organized by instrumentation and nationality.
Béla Bartók was not only a major composer in a post-Romantic extended tonal style, but he was also a superb pianist with a precise technique, a scholarly explorer of folk music, and a serious pedagog. Folk melodies and harmonies strongly influenced his music, both indirectly and often directly, including many of his orchestral and chamber works, as well as solo piano pieces ranging in difficulty from easy to virtuosic. His For Children (Gyermekeknek,1908-1909, Sz. 42) was written for solo piano, and the original Books 1 and 2 contained 42 pieces after Hungarian folksongs and 43 pieces after Slovakian folksongs, respectively. Besides the usual purposes of music written for children, Bartók sought to broaden their musical experience with, for instance, modal and other scales, and harmonies outside the traditional western canon. For Children is by no means pablum; though the notes may be easy to play, these pieces have a lot else to offer. They were written when Bartók’s folksong research was well under way and his notational efforts at their peak. Students, teachers, and every-day players can make as much of them as they like... as simple tunes for beginners content to learn basic notes and rhythms, or as more advanced studies on articulation, musicality, etc. —extracted from the preface by JWP
John Pratt has arranged selected pieces from the For Children books as various duos, trios, and quartets for wind instruments. As presented originally by Bartók, many of the folksongs are entirely or mostly in two voices, like Bach’s two-part inventions in style if not structure or harmony, and thus convenient for wind duo and no more childish for Bartók than Bach. Many others are also adaptable to duos of flute or oboe and clarinet or bassoon, mostly by spreading the left-hand chords in time. Still others of the For Children pieces are more suitable for a wind trio of flute (or oboe), B-flat clarinet, and bassoon, or a quartet of flute, oboe, B-flat clarinet, and bassoon. To compare the specific songs included in our editions with the complete set arranged for piano available in Bartók’s publications, visit the For Children listing on imslp.org.
All of the NSM editions described below are available as downloadable PDFs. We provide scores, but not separate parts, as all players can easily play off copies of the scores, which are organized for convenient page turns when the PDFs are printed two-sided in their entirety. Click the Preview button to view a page of the score from each edition. To order, in the table at the bottom of this webpage, check the box for the edition you would like to purchase, click Add to Cart, then click Checkout.
► Bartók - For Children, Book 1 - selected pieces arr. as Duets for Flute (or Oboe) and Clarinet
This edition includes 25 pieces from Book 1 arranged as duets; all of them can be played by B-flat clarinet and either flute or oboe, but for six of the pieces we also include alternative versions with octave changes that are better suited to oboe. The pieces included are Nos. 1-15, 22-26, 29, 31, 21, 40, and 42. Click to listen to computer-generated audio samples from the score; audio clips of #11 "Me and the Rain" with flute and clarinet and #32 "Wedding Day and Night" with oboe and clarinet are separated by a brief pause.
Score, 26 pages; Total, 30 pages.
Preview: Book 1, Flute (or Oboe) and Clarinet
► Bartók - For Children, Book 1 - selected pieces arr. as Duets for Oboe (or Flute) and Bassoon
Our oboe (or flute) and bassoon edition includes the same 25 pieces from Book 1 as our flute and clarinet edition described above, except here they are arranged and optimized as duets for oboe and bassoon, with alternative versions better suited for flute and bassoon provided for two of the folksongs.Score, 21 pages; Total, 24 pages.
Preview: Book 1, Oboe (or Flute) and Bassoon
► Bartók - For Children, Book 2 - selected pieces arr. as Duetsfor Flute (or Oboe) and Clarinet
Our Book 2 edition of arrangements for flute (or oboe) and clarinet duo includes 23 pieces: Nos. 1-6, 8, 10-13, 16-20, 22, 25, 26, 29, 31, 35, and 36. All of these pieces can be played by B-flat clarinet and either flute or oboe, but we also include alternative versions that are more suitable for oboe for three of the pieces.Score, 17 pages; Total, 22 pages.
Preview: Book 2, Flute (or Oboe) and Clarinet
► Bartók - For Children, Book 2 - selected pieces arranged as Duetsfor Oboe (or Flute) and Bassoon
The oboe (or flute) and bassoon edition includes the same 23 pieces from Book 2 described above for flute and clarinet, here arranged and optimized as duets for oboe and bassoon, with an alternative version better suited for flute for one of the pieces.Score, 15 pages; Total, 18 pages.
Preview: Book 2, Oboe (or Flute) and Bassoon
► Bartók - For Children, Book 1 - selected pieces arranged as Triosfor Flute (or Oboe), Clarinet, and Bassoon
In this trio edition, we present 20 songs from Book 1, including 14 that are also available as duo arrangements in the editions listed above and 6 that are only offered in our trio edition. The pieces are Nos. 1-9, 11, 13-15, 19, 20, 30, 35, 39, 41, and 42. The trios are arranged for flute or oboe, B-flat clarinet, and bassoon. Click to listen to a computer-generated audio sample from #39 "Insect Wedding".
Score, 21 pages; Total, 24 pages.
Preview: Book 1, Flute (or Oboe), Clarinet, and Bassoon Trio
► Bartók - For Children, Book 2 - selected pieces arranged as Trios for Flute (or Oboe), Clarinet, and Bassoon
Here Mr. Pratt offers eighteen of Bartók’s Book 2 Slovakian folksongs in arrangements for a woodwind trio of flute or oboe, B-flat clarinet, and bassoon; the pieces included are Nos. 2, 3, 7, 9, 11-14, 16, 17, 21, 25, 26, 28, 29, 32, 33, and 42. Ten of these songs are also included in our duo arrangement publications.Score, 18 pages; Total, 22 pages.
Preview: Book 2 Flute (or Oboe), Clarinet, and Bassoon Trio
► Bartók - For Children, Book 1 - selected pieces arranged for Wind Quartet (Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon)
This edition includes eleven of Bartók’s Hungarian folksongs in arrangements for a woodwind quartet of flute, oboe, B-flat clarinet, and bassoon. Two of these songs, Nos. 19 and 20, are also included in our trio arrangement publication, but none are replicated in the duo arrangement editions; the quartet publication includes Book 1 Nos. 16-21, 27, 28, and 36-38.Score, 11 pages; Total, 14 pages.
Preview: Book 1, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon Quartet
► Bartók - For Children, Book 2 - selected pieces arranged for Wind Quartet (Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon)
This edition presents seventeen of Bartók’s Book 2 Slovakian folksongs in arrangements for woodwind quartet (flute, oboe, B-flat clarinet, and bassoon). Four of these songs, Nos. 11, 14, 25 and 28, are also included in our trio arrangement publication, and several are included in the duo arrangement editions. The Book 2 songs arranged here as quartets are Nos. 5, 8, 11, 14, 15, 18, 23- 25, 27, 28, 30, 31, 34, 37, 38, and 43. Click to listen to a computer-generated audio sample that consists of ~32” of song #5 Bird in Flight (Theme & part of Var.1, through m34), followed immediately by #18 Former Flame in its entirety.Score, 24 pages; Total, 28 pages.
Preview: Book 2, Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon Quartet
Petite Fantaisie Hongroise No.1, Op.21, by J. Bloch
Transcribed for Alto Flute and Piano by C.A.Vater
Piano Score and Alto Flute Part, PDF $5.99
József Bloch (1862-1922) was a Hungarian violin virtuoso, composer, and professor at the National Academy of Music and the National Conservatory (www.jewishencyclopedia.com). His Petite Fantaisie Hongroise No.1, Opus 21, was written for piano and violin and published by Bárd, ca. 1901. We thought this piece would work beautifully on alto flute, so we created a transcription of the violin part. In the range written for the Petite Fantaisie Hongroise, the alto flute may evoke the dark, mournful tone of the modern tárogató, which is often referred to as the Hungarian national instrument. We provide both our transcribed alto flute part and a re-notated edition of the piano score.
Alto Flute part, 3 pages; Piano Score, 6 pages; Total, 12 pages.Preview
For those who would prefer to purchase a professionally-printed hard copy of this piece, rather than the PDF download offered above, our print edition of the Bloch Petite Fantaisie Hongroise No.1, Op. 21 transcribed for Piano & Alto Flute is available directly from NSM for $13.49 plus a $5.95 shipping and handling fee to addresses in the USA. Use the Contact Us form to let us know which hard copy publication(s) you would like to purchase, along with your email contact information and USPS mailing address. We will then send you a PayPal invoice for the sale and, once we receive notice from PayPal that you have paid for the item(s), we will ship your music to the address provided.