One of the most beautiful and romantic of Chopin’s piano solos. He was only 20 years old when he composed it but his style is already present. Sammut has adapted this beautiful work for 5.0 octave marimba and it makes an exciting program addition or encore for any recital.
“Eric Sammut has arranged Chopin’s piano etude, ‘The Revolutionary’ (Op. 10, No. 12) for solo marimba. This work also appears on Sammut’s Four-Mallet BalletCD. As opposed to being a simple transcription of the original piece (which migh prove impossible, given Chopin’s virtuosic writing for the piano), this versino is a unique combination of Chopin’s melodies and Sammut’s inventiveness. This is achieved through the addition of meter changes, key shifts, original material and voicings that are idiomatic to four-mallet marimba techniques. Sammut’s tempo marking indicates a quarter-note value of 124-132, while Chopin’s urtext edition dictates that of 160 (both the composer and arranger give the textual indication of “Allegro con fuoco”). Sammut’s version is also 44 measures longer than Chopin’s due to the many liberties the arranger has taken. Several expressive markings differ between the two versions, which might lead the performer to study the piano score in order to gain alternative insights into the piece.
The performer uses four mallets throughout and should be very comfortable with rapid single independent, double vertical and double lateral techniques. The piece can be performed on a low-F instrument, with the exception of the final chord, which requires a low C. While not a literal translation of Chopin’s famous work, this new rendition of ‘The Revolutionary’ is accessible to the marimba and embraces the spirit of the original.”
— Jason Baker, Percussive Notes, March 2010