Boris Papandopulo
Boris Papandopulo

Horoscope, Dance Suite for Two Pianos and Percussion, Op. 52

Publisher: Croatian Music Information Centre
Publish year: 2013

Edition type: score

Price: 21,24 

In stock

printed edition
Catalogue type:
chamber music
Catalogue subtype:
two solo instruments, percussion
two pianos, percussion
pf. I. pf. II. – tamb. picc., ptti, G. C., tamburino, tam-t., trgl.
Number of pages:
Book height:
32 cm
Publication language:
Croatian, English
About the music edition:
Boris Papandopulo (1906 – 1991) is one of the most distinctive Croatian musicians of the 20th century. Papandopulo also worked as music writer, journalist, reviewer, pianist and piano accompanist; however, he achieved the peaks of his career in music as a composer. His composing oeuvre is imposing – Papandopulo composed almost 500 opuses: with great success he created instrumental (orchestral, concertante, chamber and solo), vocal and instrumental (for solo voice and choir), music-stage and film music. In all these kinds and genres he left a string of anthology-piece compositions of great artistic value. Boris Papandopulo started to compose Horoscope, dance suite for two pianos and percussion op 52 in Zagreb, where on July 16, 1935, he finished the writing of the music for Cancer. The last movement of the cycle, Gemini, was completed in Split on August 15 of the same year. According to data currently available, Horoscope was first performed in Belgrade on March 8. 1936 in the National Theatre as part “of the Matinee of the Dance Studio of Ana Maletić”. Judging from the musical structure, harmony and rhythmical component this dance suite genuinely was “done in the spirit of Modernism” and “deals with the different characteristics of the signs that astrology attributes people”. It is also a kind of an attempt to set out the psychological characteristics of each sign of the Zodiac with music. The sequence of the signs, after the introductory Prelude, corresponds to the regular ordering in the horoscope. Papandopulo uses the percussion only in a few movements, in Aries, Taurus, Cancer and Leo, and very parsimoniously at that. The musical idiom of Horoscope is typical of the transitional period of music between the wars, and, like many works created in the period, manifests the influences of Impressionism, Expressionism, revival styles (for example, the motorics of the rhythmic movement of the neo-Baroque), but also abounds in post-Romantic harmonic progressions and the repetitive rhythmic patterns and ostinati typical of the musical language of Stravinsky’s ballets of what is called the Russian phase. The piano parts are written in places with great virtuosity and demand a great amount of pianistic skill. (Davor Merkaš)