I selected Benedetto Marcello’s Sonata No. 2 in E Minor as one of the pieces for Concerto Workshop last summer. The first reason I picked it was because it is a good piece to feature the bass students. Secondly, I like to have two choices for cellists. The first piece, Festival, had a contemporary sound. I thought the sonata would be an excellent contrast.
I knew I would have to orchestrate the work to be able to use it, but it seemed to be worth the time. Then in the spring, after I announced the music for workshop, the local viola students took the sonata to heart.
The first performance of the new arrangement took place on Friday, August 9th. The violists used the solo part from the International Edition. The cellist and bassist used my arrangement. The first movement was performed with Kate Fierens as the soloist. The second movement featured two violists, Hannah Litz and Alyssa Perrone. The third movement was performed with cellist Richard Patterson and bassist Katrina Levendoski playing the solo part. Violists Kate Fierens and Leanne Santavicca teamed up as soloists for the fourth movement. With the attendees of the workshop, it worked better to feature the violists for most of the sonata even though my original intention was for bass and cello.
The score and parts of the Benedetto Marcello Sonata No 2 in E Minor are now available. Feel free to perform it with solo cello and orchestra, solo bass and orchestra, or solo viola and orchestra. The sonata is a musical gem in any setting.