FOR THE CURIOUS CELLIST

Verdi: “Donna é Mobile” (from “Rigoletto”)

We have multiple versions available of this wonderful little aria: in two different keys, with or without cadenzas, and either with playalong audio track or with a real pianist.

1: IN B MAJOR: NO CADENZAS

First of all here is Verdi’s original version (more or less), in the original key of B major. This is actually a very short aria that is played twice, without any differences between the two repetitions (verses).

Edited Performance Version     Clean Performance Version      Piano Score

Audio Download

 

2: IN B MAJOR: WITH CADENZAS

“Donna é mobile” means “women are fickle (capricious, unpredictable)”. So here below is a somewhat more interesting version in which two little improvisatory vocal (cello) cadenzas – both very capricious and theatrical – have been added near the end of the second verse. The first verse is however identical to the above version.

Edited Performance Version    Clean Performance Version     Piano Score

If we want to play the cadenza-version of this aria with the play-along accompaniment that follows then we will need a specially written-out part. This is because the entrances of the piano after the cadenzas are different to when we play with a real, live pianist. With the play-along accompaniment, these piano entrances need to come after a long held note by the cello. This allows us to play the cadenzas with improvisatory freedom, without worrying how to coincide exactly with the entrance of the piano. The piano entries act as up-beats for the cellist, telling us exactly when to start our post-cadenza “a tempo” music. Here then is the version “with cadenzas and with playalong accompaniment”:

Clean Playalong Version     Edited Playalong Version

Audio Download

 

3: EASIER VERSION IN Bb MAJOR: NO CADENZAS

And now, for our “Easier Version”, we have simply transposed the entire aria down by a semitone, bringing it into Bb major instead of B major. This means that our highest note is the half-string harmonic on the “A”-string. Here is this Easier (lower) Version, without any cadenzas.

Bb Major Version: No Cadenzas      Piano Score: Bb Major Version: No Cadenzas

Audio Download

 

4: EASIER VERSION IN Bb MAJOR: WITH CADENZAS

We can of course also play our Easier Version also with cadenzas. These have however been modified to stay down in the Neck Region at all times.

Bb Major (Easier) Version: With Low Cadenzas         Piano Score: Bb Major: With Cadenzas

As with the original key versions, if we want to play our Easier Version with the playalong accompaniment which follows, we will need a specially written-out part. This is because the entrances of the piano after the cadenzas are different to when we play with a real, live pianist. With the play-along accompaniment, these piano entrances need to come after a long held note by the cello. This allows us to play the cadenzas with improvisatory freedom, without worrying how to coincide exactly with the entrance of the piano. The piano entries act as up-beats for the cellist, telling us exactly when to start our post-cadenza “a tempo” music. Here then is the “Easier Version With Cadenzas” for playing with the playalong accompaniment:

Bb Major Playalong Version: With Cadenzas

Audio Download