Comment by thereallyniceman on June 8, 2021 at 14:32

First Class!

Comment by TONY BRYAN on June 9, 2021 at 16:04
Another gem of a classic banjo classic! Well done! Just one point: I don’t think this is a
Schottische as such. The Schottische does exist as a dance in many countries, though from my researches I could not find that they had much in common with each other. No, what makes Queen of the Burlesque a Schottische is the frequent use of harmonics. At least, that is the best and most consistent definition I could find. For some reason, people in the dim distant past associated music of the Highland Glens with Tinkerbell sounds. They obviously never met any of the folks from those parts! So we are not looking for a specific rhythm or speed for QOTB, so much as bringing out the sparkles in a larger-than-life performance.
Comment by Anurakt Scheepers on June 9, 2021 at 19:43

Thank you RNM!

And Tony, thanks for sharing your knowledge. I deleted the Schottische dance-thing.

To me this old music is really new, so I better not claim things until I know what |I'm talking about- you made me a little wiser now! 

Comment by Joel Hooks on June 10, 2021 at 2:27

I don’t know Tony, pieces that carry “Schottische” in the title (or subtitle) follow a pretty clear form and harmonics rarely have anything to do with it,

In late 19th century American publications I would guess conservatively that “schottisches” were roughly 30% of the banjo music published.  One of the most well known “Sunflower Dance” was originally published by S. S. Stewart as “With the Tide Schottische” with nary a harmonic to be found.

it was certainly a genre of popular solo music that was strongly based off of the dance form.

Schottisches were also called “barn dance” in subtitles of many banjo solos.

Comment by Joel Hooks on June 10, 2021 at 2:30

Oh, wait, are you confusing Schottische with Scottish?  Those don’t have anything to do with each other.  Schottisches are slow polkas.

Comment by TONY BRYAN on June 10, 2021 at 13:45

I don't think I was saying that the dance called the Schottische doesn't exist - they were once very popular, I have played them, the literature is full of it, and not a few PhD theses on the subject are available online, any time you are still awake after counting sheep.  A slow polka seems to sum it up.  I also agree that there is a lot of music out there that describes itself as a Schottische, and quite a bit of that music was written for banjo.  Quite a few of the pieces I have looked at that don't have Schottische in the title have 'Tempo di Schottische' in the introduction.  My point was that Queen of the Burlesque, although it describes itself as a Schottische, has three parts with very different tempos, only the first of which might classify as a slow polka.  So why call it a Schottische?   Then I recalled some research I once did to track down the speed at which the Schottische should be played and found a comment that some composers in the late Victorian era would call a composition with harmonics in it a Schottische, and one of those could be played at any tempo.  Unfortunately, I have misplaced the reference (has anyone else ever seen such a comment?).  Fairly obviously, if it's going to have harmonics in it, it is limited to stringed instruments.  However, as early as December 1915, the editor of BMG quipped: E.R. asks why we have not published a schottische during the last few years.  A: Because we think this type of dance has "schott its bolt."  Oh, how we laughed!

Comment by Joel Hooks on June 10, 2021 at 14:03

With our classic banjo canon there is "for use" music and concert solos.  "For use" would be a lot of the generic pieces, particularly published in the US between 1879 and 1900.  These are the basic sort of polkas, schottisches, waltzes, marches, reels, etc., that I believe were actually intended for use with dancing.

Then we have the concert solo.   I doubt anyone was dancing to West Lawn Polka or Cupid's Arrow or L'infanta March. These are concert recital pieces that take a basic form of dances.

As far as QOTB, reviewing the score, I don't see any tempo changes.  I have always played it at strict tempo throughout.  The one thing that this piece is missing that many other solo "schottisches" have (but not all) is the modulation to the relative minor in the B part. 

My wife ruined schottisches for me.  She pointed out that they all sound like "If I Only Had a Brain" from the wizard of OZ, now that is all I hear when I play them.

Comment by Trapdoor2 on June 10, 2021 at 17:47

Hmmm. I would like to see references that state Harmonics are a prerequisite for a "Schottische". These are dance tunes, coming from the polka, etc. The music to be played for this dance is simply called a 'schottische'...and can be anything that provides rhythm and the pulse required to make the steps and structure of the dance.

Of course, the term starts as a popular name for this dance and moves quickly into popular use...for just about anything a group of people want it to do. When the caller (if there is one) calls out "Schottische!" everybody knows what's coming up. While these are danced in Europe and America, the American dance is usually in round form rather than lines or squares.

Because it is a 'slow polka', they typically have a jaunty dotted rhythm...but really can be anything. 

Comment by Jody Stecher on June 10, 2021 at 20:22

For what it's worth, here in the USA I have played for Schottische dancing. The repertoire was tunes that were thought to be intended for dancing the schottische, had names that sometimes included the word "schottische" and sometimes didn't, One of them had no name at all.  I can't recall playing more than half a dozen of these tunes over the years but I am certain none of them included harmonics. All of them were played in dotted rhythm at a moderate pace.   My imperfect memory says that that the schottische dancing I played for was couple dancing. 

Comment by Frank Coyne on June 12, 2021 at 13:19

Brilliant Anurakt,  well done!

Brings back old memories. This was one of the first pieces we learned from our wonderful teacher Eddie Tobin more than fifty years ago! Frank, Dublin Ireland

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