Johann Joseph Vilsmayr
Six Partitas (Artificiosus Concentus pro Camera).  The only surviving work of Vilsmayr, the six partitas for solo violin, originally published in 1715, are here transcribed into modern notation from the sole surviving copy housed in the British Library. The partitas evidence inspiration from the works of Johann Schmelzer and, especially, from those of Heinrich Biber, who likely was one of Vilsmayr’s teachers. Particularly Biber-esque is Vilsmayr’s use of scordatura.  As with Biber’s Mystery Sonatas, the partitas are replete with polyphonic writing, and all but the first and last partitas require retuning the instrument to various combinations. Also like Biber, Vilsmayr employs numerous virtuoso passages in the partitas while evincing a clear influence of Austrian folk-music harmonic structure. The style of the partitas is French, but both the melodic and harmonic construction are distinctly representative of the Austrian baroque.

Pages: 47 pp., 8˝” x 11”
Level:  Moderately advanced
Performance Time:  Various.

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