Hungarian Dances (Brahms)  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

The Hungarian Dances by Johannes Brahms are a set of 21 lively dance tunes based mostly on Hungarian themes. Only numbers 11, 14 and 16 are entirely original compositions. In fact, number 5 was based on the csárdás by Kéler Béla titled "Bártfai emlék"(Remembrance of Bartfa) which Brahms mistakenly thought was a traditional folksong. They vary from about a minute to four minutes in length. They are among Brahms' most popular works, and were certainly the most profitable for him. The most famous Hungarian Dance is No. 5, it was used in the barber scene in The Great Dictator. The Hungarian Dances were influential in the development of ragtime. See, for example, the role of German-American piano teacher Julius Weiss in ragtime composer Scott Joplin's early life and career.

List of Hungarian Dances

  • No. 1 in G minor: Allegro molto
  • No. 2 in D minor: Allegro non assai
  • No. 3 in F major: Allegretto
  • No. 4 in F minor (FTemplate:Music minor for orchestra): Poco sostenuto
  • No. 5 in FTemplate:Music minor (G minor for orchestra): Allegro
  • No. 6 in DTemplate:Music major (D major for orchestra): Vivace
  • No. 7 in A major (F major for orchestra): Allegretto
  • No. 8 in A minor: Presto
  • No. 9 in E minor: Allegro non troppo
  • No. 10 in E major (F major for orchestra): Presto
  • No. 11 in D minor: Poco andante
  • No. 12 in D minor: Presto
  • No. 13 in D major: Andantino grazioso
  • No. 14 in D minor: Un poco andante
  • No. 15 in BTemplate:Music major: Allegretto grazioso
  • No. 16 in F minor: Con moto
  • No. 17 in FTemplate:Music minor: Andantino
  • No. 18 in D major: Molto vivace
  • No. 19 in B minor: Allegretto
  • No. 20 in E minor: Poco allegretto
  • No. 21 in E minor: Vivace

The Hungarian Dances bear many resemblances to, and may have influenced, the similarly profitable and popular Slavonic Dances of Antonín Dvořák.


Brahms wrote orchestral arrangements for No. 1, No. 3 and No. 10. Other composers, including Antonín Dvořák, orchestrated the other dances. These composers were Johan Andreas Hallén for No. 2, Paul Juon for No. 4, Martin Schmeling for Nos. 5 to 7, Hans Gál for Nos. 8 and 9, Albert Parlow for Nos. 11 to 16. Dvořák orchestrated the last numbers.

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Hungarian Dances (Brahms)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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