Saturday Morning Listening: Khachaturian Excerpts

Good morning, everyone, at least it was morning when I started writing.   I thought I would post a little weekend listening of a few non-piano pieces of Khachaturian.  Please enjoy at your leisure!  Would love to hear your thoughts.

1.  “Sabre Dance”  from his ballet “Gayane”   

Many of you will know this and I’m sure many circus performers and gymnasts do as well! I think it would make a great “tap along” piece for a student’s understanding of a VERY STEADY beat.

2.  “Masquerade Waltz”  from his ballet “Gayane”   

Perhaps one of the greatest waltzes of all time (at least in my humble opinion).  This piece always uplifts me when I hear it.  I need to place a conductor’s baton in my students’ hands and have them conduct this.  What a way to feel one beat per bar!

In 1941 Khachaturian was asked to write music for a production of the play, Masquerade, by Russian poet and playwright Mikhail Lermontov.  It is better known in the form of a five-movement suite.

And a lovely piano transcription here!

It’s available in THIS COLLECTION.  I immediately thought of how fun this would be as a piano duet.  Found one HERE on Sheet Music Plus.

3.  “Adagio”  from his third and final ballet “Spartacus”  

One of my all-time favorites.  His last internationally- acclaimed work completed in 1954.

Came across this passionate piano arrangement you must listen to….

What a discovery!  I found it available for purchase HERE!






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4 Responses to Saturday Morning Listening: Khachaturian Excerpts

  1. Nancy Wang says:

    Thank you so much! I love all your teaching ideas and resources, particularly: 1) great idea to use “Sabre Dance” to illustrate a steady beat; and 2) love that piano arrangement of “Adagio”! I also like the video, the guy in it plays in such a beautiful, musical style.

  2. Loved all the performances. Received the Concert book and have really had fun with the Waltz from Masquerade. Did Khachaturian do the transcriptions?
    Also enjoyed Mr. Cameron’s performance and ordered that music, too!

    • Elizabeth says:

      Hi Karen:

      I believe that the solo transcriptions are Khachaturian’s own unless noted otherwise. My Schirmer score gives credit to an arranger of the “Sabre Dance” so I assume your Schirmer score of the “Concert Works for Piano” would also acknowledge arrangers. Mr. Cameron’s solo performance of the Adagio is so exquisite. Glad you received the music for that. I need to order it!

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