H.C. Lumbye
Divertissement i Form af en Carnevals-Scene
Symphony orchestra
B4, 66 pages

For a ballet performance at Elsinore Theatre on 16 December 1846, August Bournonville choreographed a Spanish-flavoured solo dance scene which, on the poster announcing the performance, was entitled Maritana (Spanish Gypsy dance) choreographed on this occasion by Bournonville.

The dance piece, which was performed by Bournonville’s pupil, Augusta Nielsen, solo danseuse in the company of The Royal Theatre, consisted of two Spanish dance episodes in the form of an initial Bolero and a concluding Jaleo, both of which were composed by Lumbye and end-dated 13 December 1846. The genre is considered a reflection of the tremendous popularity that Spanish folk dance had attained among the contemporary ballet audience, especially after two of the most renowned Spanish dancers of the day, Mariano Cambrubì and Dolores Serral, had visited The Royal Theatre in 1840 and created quite a sensation with their provocatively seductive and vivacious performances.

The success in Elsinore encouraged Bournonville straightaway to make use of Lumbye’s music once again in the expanded divertissement which, only a few months later, on 15 April 1847, the renowned dancer, choreographer and ballet master mounted at The Court Theatre in Copenhagen with the new title Maritana, Divertissement in the Form of a Carnival Scene. This version, which was executed by fourteen soloists from The Royal Ballet, headed by Augusta Nielsen and Bournonville himself, contained an introductory Waltz and a Finale Gallop in addition to the original Bolero and Jaleo. The music accompanying the waltz episode was comprised of selected excerpts (the introduction and waltzes nos. 2 and 5 as well as the coda) borrowed from one of Lumbye’s earlier waltz suites, Les Souvenirs de Paris (premiered in Tivoli on 21 May 1845). The finale’s gallop, on the other hand, is a direct reuse of Lumbye’s famous musical business card, his popular Champagne Gallop.

Maritana is published by the Danish Centre for Music Publication of the Royal Library in cooperation with Edition·S – music¬sound¬art.


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