A short introduction:
The integration of folklore influences into classical western music is, contrary to general assumptions, a difficult task. The challenge is equal, if not more so, than writing an original composition - it must be a work of based on inspiration and deliberation.
The sincere inspiration that embodies folklore has deeply influenced classical western music. As for transformation, in music it consists of any operation or process that a composer, performer or analyst may apply to a musical variable. Examples of this process include multiplication, rotation, permutation and creative combinations. This transformation of folklore influences into classical music provides extensive ongoing hurdles and rewards
Isaac Albéniz (1860-1909)
Iberia Book 1
Iberia is a suite for piano composed between 1905 and 1909. It is composed of four books of three pieces. It is Albéniz's best-known work and considered his masterpiece. It was highly praised by Claude Debussy and Olivier Messiaen, who said: "Iberia is the wonder for the piano; it is perhaps on the highest place among the more brilliant pieces for the king of instruments". Stylistically, this suite falls squarely in the school of Impressionism, especially in its musical evocations of Spain. Technically, Iberia is one of the most difficult pieces in the repertoire, requiring of its interpreters immense strength and flexible hands.
Karol Szymanowski (1882-1937)
Mazurkas from Op 50
Karol Szymanowski was a Polish composer and pianist, the most celebrated Polish composer of the early 20th century. He is considered a member of the late 19th-/early 20th-century modernist movement Young Poland. Szymanowski was influenced by the music of Richard Wagner, Richard Strauss, Max Reger, Alexander Scriabin and the impressionism of Claude Debussy, and Maurice Ravel.
He also drew much influence from his countryman Frédéric Chopin and from Polish folk music. Like Chopin he wrote a number of mazurkas for piano. His Mazurkas undoubtedly represent one of the most valuable achievements of the last period of Szymanowski’s creative career, where the folklore of various regions of Poland underwent masterly stylisation using a rich arsenal of techniques of modern musical language.
Igor Stravinsky (1882-1971)
Trois mouvements de Petrouchka
Three Movements from Petrushka for the solo piano were composed ten years later for his friend, pianist Arthur Rubinstein, and are dedicated to him. Stravinsky is very explicit in stating that the movements are not transcriptions. He was not trying to reproduce the sound of the orchestra, but instead wished to compose a score which would be essentially pianistic even though its musical material was drawn directly from the ballet. Stravinsky also wanted to create a work which would encourage pianists to play his music, but it should be one in which they could display their technique, an objective he amply achieved.
Béla Bartók (1881-1945)
Szabadban / Out of doors)
Béla Bartók was a Hungarian composer and pianist. He is considered one of the most important composers of the 20th century; he and Liszt are regarded as Hungary's greatest composers. Through his collection and analytical study of folk music, he was one of the founders of comparative musicology, which later became ethnomusicology.
Out of Doors is a set of five piano solo pieces, written by Béla Bartók in 1926. The compositional process sheds some light on the interrelation of the five pieces. "With Drums and Pipes" can be traced to a specific folk song, literally translated With a whistle, with a drum, which for Hungarians is up to this day an obvious quote from this folk song.