Arrangements of Janácek‘s works
Arrangements and transcriptions for various instruments are a common occurrence in music literature. They help to popularise works and to expand repertoire. In his youth Janácek himself arranged works by other composers (most notably Dvorák’s “Moravian Duets” for mixed choir and piano). But Janácek’s own compositions with their characteristic stylistic features have rarely been arranged when compared to the works of other, more easily “arrangeable” composers. This makes the new arrangements of Janácek’s masterpieces all the more valuable. They keep close to the originals, are sensitive to Janacek’s peculiarities, and offer a welcome addition to the repertoire of the given performing forces.
Janácek’s great admirer Krystof Maratka (born 1972) furnished a “third string quartet” with his arrangement of Janacek’s wind sextet Youth. “I proceeded strictly in the spirit of Janácek’s style and did not omit a single note. I succeeded in combining all six parts to create four logically interrelated lines that give the impression of a compact quartet,” says Maratka.
The clarinet has always played a major role in Janácek’s orchestral and chamber works. With the composer’s only piece for clarinet and piano, “Menuetto and Scherzo” (JW X/19), lost to the present day, the world-famous Israeli clarinettist Shirley Brill decided to arrange Janácek’s fascinating “Sonata for Violin and Piano” for her own instrument and to record it for Hänssler Classic.
Orchestral arrangements of Janácek’s works – new symphonic repertoire