Chopin: Walse Brilliante Op 18 in Eb: Transcribed for Cello

Here is the downloadable sheet music for a transcription for cello and accompaniment (piano, guitar or harp) of Chopin‘s magnificent Walse Brilliante in Eb Op 18. Even though this is considered one “piece” (waltz) it actually contains seven different waltz themes, each of which has its own distinct character (and tempo). In this way it is quite a lot like the large, famous waltzes of Johann Strauss.

If you don’t already know this piece, here is a wonderful performance of it in its original piano version by Krystian Zimerman, transposed down a semitone into the key of the cello transcription so that we can play along with him just for fun.


For this transcription, the cello plays the “melody” which was originally in the right hand of the piano part. In order to make this sparkling, virtuosic waltz more easily playable on the cello, the key has been lowered by a semitone into D major. Two accompaniment parts are offered:

The dynamics have been taken from Chopin’s original manuscript, available on The “Easier Version” cello part is in the same key as the “Performance Version” but the higher passages have been taken down an additional octave.

  1.    Edited Performance Version
  2.      Clean Performance Version
  3.       Easier Version
  1.  Piano (Harp/Guitar) Score (easy)
  2.        Piano Score (more difficult)

Here, to allow for improvements and further adaptations, are the engraving files in XML format for all of the above sheet music:

Engraving Files (XML)

And here are two downloadable audios of a play-along piano accompaniment. In the first, the fast bits are slowed down whereas the second audio is at performance speed. Waltzes need a lot of rubato so it will definitely be a good idea to listen first to the accompaniments in order to get used to the many different (but still vastly insufficient) rubatos with which they are recorded. Each audio has a simple 4-bar introduction so that we can know when to start playing. After the General Pause in bar 233, piano notes have been added on the first two beats of bar 234 so that we can know when to enter in that bar. Also, on the first beat of bar 289 a piano note has been added to help us not lose our place: