… he shoulda written this for English horn, don’t you think?

It’s funny — or maybe not? — but I somehow hear a bit of theremin-esque stuff going on with the (original) soprano version:

Hmm. But a theremin would need to be in tune … and the only one I could find on YouTube was. Well. Not quite “there”, if you know what I mean. So never mind.

But wait! Someone has arranged it for d’amore at least …

Now … arrange it for celli and EH and I’ll beg to do with with SJCO! 🙂


  1. Great post! There actually is a YouTube video of BB#5 with Theremin, and it sounds not too bad:


    That’s Thorward Jorgenson on theremin. Listen past the Saint Saëns for most of the the Aria.

    This great music has been arranged for pretty much everything, but I haven’t come across an English Horn yet. One of my favourite versions is Branford Marsalis’s for soprano saxophone.

  2. Ah, definitely better than the theremin video I found (which, when I was previewing it, cause my husband to come all the way from the other end of the house it was so bad)!

    I still think it would be great on EH, and I am thinking someone should do that arrangement. Now. (You? Do you do that sort of thing, or do you just follow and blog about Villa Lobos?)

    If soprano sax does it, EH should definitely get a crack at it! 🙂

  3. Villa-Lobos wrote so much music that one has to specialize. I listen (and muddle through trying to make head or tail of all the works), and I let talented people do the arranging and performing.

    While we wait for someone to arrange Bachianas Brasileiras #5 for English Horn, let’s try this version for four accordians:

  4. And now the d’amore video has been pulled. Sad. I wonder if it was a copyright issue? I do hope my blog didn’t cause the issue. Sigh.

    Hmmm … next thing you’ll be sending me a rendition with bagpipes! 😉

  5. No bagpipes yet, but…

    Trombone choir instead of cellos: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yBXCqU5idNs

    Flute sextet: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tezVVf1hmuA

    Mandolins! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXsx_xk25s4

    Many, many guitars: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxV93I5H3b4

    Here is the Quinteto Villa-Lobos, who are at the forefront of wind playing in Brazil: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muIF6erMO88 – this is a gorgeous arrangement by Paulo Sergio Santos.

    And one of my favourites: an all percussion version by Uakti: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ufs5-3rONMM

  6. Fun! Thanks. 🙂

  7. Hey Patty:

    I finally came across an English Horn arrangement, with harpsichord. It’s on Kenneth Hamrick’s Plaintive Melody CD on Delos – DE3318. The disc is on The Naxos Music Library. A nice arrangement, I think (of the first movement Aria only).

    This is the first time I’ve heard the harpsichord as an accompanying instrument in this piece – at times it does a good job of imitating the plucked cellos of the original. And, of course, the English Horn is a natural for singing the soprano melody.


    – Dean

  8. Thanks, Dean! I’ll be looking for this, to be sure!

  9. Ah, too funny! I looked up the recording on iTunes and I already own the recording. This is actually Thomas Stacy’s English horn recital CD. (Of NY Philharmonic) I guess I’ve neglected to listen to the thing for so long I’d forgotten all about this!

  10. Hello, not sure if this was mentioned above or not but in the CD Brazilian Rhapsody featuring Daniel Barenboim & Alex Kline there is an arrangement of Bachianas Brasileiras No. 5. The oboe and the piano are the main instruments in the arrangement, however it also features a flute & a clarinet. As an oboist I’d really love to find this perticular arrangement, it’s really beautiful.

    – Eileen