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Rossini: Les soirées musicales - 6. La pastorella dell'Alpi (Tirolese)
by Cecilia Bartoli, mezzo-soprano, with Charles Spencer, piano
The effervescent "La pastorella dell'Alpi" comes from a set of songs composed in 1835 by Gioachino Rossini under the umbrella "Les soirées musicales". The piece originated from the Austrian Alps and a waltz style named a 'Tyrol' (hence 'Tirolese'). This was a new style at the time which grew in popularity, and was especially embraced by French society.

Set in a major key, the song opened with a 16-bar introduction with a firm waltz-like feel in the left hand of the accompaniment and a light and flowing quaver right hand motif, reflecting the flirtatiousness of the shepherdess as she called to passing travellers. The voice entered with two slurred quavers followed by four staccato quavers which led into a rhythmic pattern imitating a yodel, this being particularly obvious as the voice sang the octave leap at the end of each of the first two phrases. The song continued with a vocal line which accentuated its girl-like simplicity.
Posted: 14th October 2019
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