The first performance of Tchaikovsky's "Nutcracker" ballet in 1892 was deemed a failure and only the suite of dances extracted from the original score enjoyed any popularity until the early 20th century when it suddenly caught fire, particularly in the United States and became a holiday favorite. The three dances I present here (March, Arabian Dance and Trepak) are ones ensconced in our musical memory and present an opportunity for young string players to actively participate in this Christmas favorite. I have endeavored to produce a work that conveys the excitement of the original, yet playable by intermediate students. The "Violin I B" part fits perfectly with all the others yet provides an alternative for those not yet proficient in the more complicated rhythms.
Tchaikovsky/arr. John O'Neill - Music from the Desert
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