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Edouard Deldevez » Pièces diverses

A collection of violin compositions from Corelli to Viotti (26 in all), edited by Edouard Marie Ernest Deldevez (13th May 1817 - 6th November 1897). Some works are represented by extracts only. Deldevez provides dynamic nuances, detailed bowing, articulation, and tempi, very few fingering indications, but no directional bowings. Deldevez provides a fully realised keyboard part as well as the original bass line. The violin part includes the bass line. The title page gives only the names of the most important composers included in the collection; it is followed by a full table of contents and a lengthy preface mostly concerned with ornamentation and the explanation of obsolete notation. Each work includes a brief biographical note on the composer.

Full title:

Pièces diverses choisies dans les oeuvres des célèbres Violinistes-Compositeurs des XVIIe et XVIIIe siècles avec parties concertantes ajoutées au texte original des auteurs et réalisées pour piano et violon par E. M. E. Deldevez. Ouvrage approuvé par l'Institut et adopté par le Conservatoire de musique. Op. 19. Paris, chez S. Richault.

The report on the collection prepared by the Académie des Beaux-Arts, signed by Auber, Carafa, Ambroise Thomas, Reber, Clapisson, and Berlioz, describes it thus:

Towards the end of the 17th century, the art of the violin took a new form which was constantly developed and enlarged up to the present day. It is from Italy, that motherland of the arts, that the founder of our modern schools, Corelli, came. Then came Geminiani, Tartini, Locatelli, etc., etc., and finally Viotti. All the works of these masters bore the grand and original character which still make up the most beautiful monuments of the art of the violin. M. Deldevez has correctly thought that such masterpieces ought not to remain buried in libraries. To translate the original text of the old masters in a way intelligible to all; to create rich accompaniments which add brilliant execution to the interest of the composition; in a word, to set off the merit of these works and make them better appreciated by [our] contemporaries - that is the aim proposed by M. Deldevez, and which his work fully achieves.

The collection was also endorsed by Meyerbeer, who wrote this testimonial for the first edition (1857):

Paris le 15 Septembre 1857
Je partage entièrement l'opinion de mes illustres confrères de l'Institut de Musique sur le grand mérite du travail de Monsieur Deldevez, et son utilité pour l'art. C'est une idée de plus heureuses, executée avec autant de conscience que de talent. Cet intérresante ouvrage mérite d'être étudié non seulement des Violinistes, mais aussi des Compositeurs.
[I fully share the opinion of my illustrious colleagues in the Institute of Music on the great merit of M. Deldevez's work, and of its usefulness for the art [of music]. It is one of the happiest ideas, executed with as much care as skill. This interesting work is worthy of study not only by violinists but also by composers.]

Meyerbeer refers to his writing the testimonial in his diary entry for 16th September 1857, where he describes this collection as

...eine Kompilation einer Sammlung Violinenkanon der altesten Zeit an von Deldevez. [S. Henze-Döhring and P. Mücke (eds.), Giacomo Meyerbeer Briefe und Tagebücher, 8 vols. (Berlin and New York: Walter de Gruyter, 2004), vol. 7, p 231]

A committee of the Paris Conservatoire (Auber, Monnais, Halévy, Carafa, Thomas, Le Borne, Vogt, Massart, Alard, Gallay, Prumier père, Kastner and de Beauchesnes) also pronounced on the collection's merits:

The Committee of Musical Studies of the Imperial Conservatoire of Music and Speech has examined the work submitted to it by M. Deldevez, consisting of a selection of pieces taken from the works of the great violinist-composers of the 17th and 18th centuries, with concerted parts added to the original text, realised for violin and piano. the idea of this collection appeared to him to be excellent from both a historical and a practical point of view. Pupils will find there the benefit of being familiarised with masterpieces no less different in style than in period, and of following the art of the violin in all its mechanical development.  It is another equally happy idea, and one which will without doubt contribute to the popularisation of the work, that of having placed under each piece a piano accompaniment composed following the figured bass, being an inspiration to the melody, and giving to the natural harmony  the developments which the composer implied. the committee thinks, then, that the work of M. Deldevez renders a service to education and that there is place for it to be adopted for class use. 


Opus No: op. 19

Editions
Editor(s) Title Publisher Publication No. Year
Deldevez, Edouard Pièces diverses Richault 1857 View