Jolivet: Concerto for Flute and String Orchestra

SKU MM-0017
Weight 4.00 LBS
Difficulty Advanced
Instrumentation Solo Flute, String Orchestra
Duration 13 minutes
Set of Parts Includes Strings count
Extra Strings Available on request
Score Type Required

André Jolivet wrote his first Flute Concerto in 1949. It is scored for solo flute and strings and was premièred on 24 January 1950 by soloist Jean-Pierre Rampal. This concerto now part of the standard flute repertoire and several prominent flautists have recorded it.

Jolivet associated the sound of the flute with "the breath of life" and was particularly fascinated by its "primitive" connotations. In 1944, he wrote Chant de Linos for a competition at the Paris Conservatoire. Jean-Pierre Rampal won the First Prize and he and Jolivet became close friends. Five years later, the composer wrote the Flute Concerto for Rampal.

The concerto is cast in four short movements that follow a slow–fast–slow–fast structure reminiscent of the 17th-century Italian sonata da chiesa. Although tonally adventurous, the work is notable for its melodic simplicity and lack of gratuitous virtuosity, which sets it apart from the Romantic tradition of showy concertos.

The piece starts with a soft, melancholy melody but gets more and more agitated and dissonant as the strings enter, although some brighter passages still appear occasionally. After the dark slow movement the work ends with an Allegro risoluto and a propulsive, thrilling finale.

As critic Antoine Goléa remarked: "This is one of Jolivet's works where violence gives way to tenderness, force and passion yield to charm... sometimes lyrical, sometimes piquant and capricious."

Solo Flute, String Orchestra
13 minutes
Set of Parts:
Includes Strings count
Extra Strings:
Available on request