ALKAN - STARR; La Saltarella, for string orchestra (with optional percussion)

Charles-Valentin Alkan
Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
6 minutes
Classical music
String orchestra
Instrumental parts
Not available

La Saltarella is virtuoso work, originally composed by Alkan circa 1868, first for cello and piano, and later revised by the composer for piano 4-hands. It is the latter version that served as the source for my orchestration for string orchestra (with an optional percussion part for one-or-two players.) The orchestration is intended as a dazzling showpiece for professional chamber orchestras. Due to vicissitudes described in detail in my prefatory essay, La Saltarella has lain virtually unperformed for 14 decades. It is my hope that, in its new orchestral garb, modern day concert audiences can readily experience this exhilarating music in performances by chamber orchestras. Browsers who might be interested to know more about the background of this remarkable work are directed to my historical essay that precedes the music. This essay is accessible with Scorch by using the player’s page arrows to locate pages 2 & 3.

Instrumental parts are available on rental from Noteworthy Musical Editions. For more information about renting instrumental performance materials for this work, please visit Noteworthy Musical Editions’ website at

Here is a link to this score on the website of Noteworthy Musical Editions:

You can peruse the score to the string orchestra version of La Saltarella with SCORCH while listening to the music played by basic MIDI sounds. In addition, you can listen to an MP3 demo recording of the work made with enhanced musical sounds. If you wish, you can download this MP3 demo recording free-of-charge for repeated listening.

I hope that listeners will express their opinions of CHarles-Valentin Alkan’s La Saltarella, and my arrangement for string orchestra and percussion - either in an online review, or in an email to me (just click on the button marked EMAIL THE PUBLISHER.) I am always interested to read comments from listeners to my compositions and orchestrations.

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