24 June 1992
CHOPIN, Fryderyk (1810-1849). AUTOGRAPH MANUSCRIPT SIGNED AND DEDICATED OF THE GRANDE VALSE BRILLANTE, opus 18 in E flat major, inscribed Valse dediée à Mme Laura Horsford par Fréderic Chopin - Paris, le 10 Juillet 1833, black ink, 3½ pages, 107 bars, oblong octavo, 157 x 232mm., (some soiling, foxing and rubbing, vertical crease, taped along the inner edge of the outer pages but not over the manuscript), Paris, 10 July 1833
This work is listed in Brown, no. 62.
The work was first published by Breitkopf and Härtel, Leipzig,in July 1834 (no.5545), M. Schlesinger, Paris, in June 1834 (no.1599) and Wessel, London, in July 1834 (no.1157).
Perhaps the most famous of all Chopin waltzes, the waltz in E flat major was composed during Chopin's last months in Warsaw in 1830. 1828 - 1832 were the main years of Chopin's concert giving and the waltz was originally written for performance by the composer. As is well known, Chopin found the business of writing down his improvisations distasteful. He composed at the keyboard but different versions of his works were given at each performance, resulting in the variety of forms in which Chopin's compositions survive in autograph state. Other autographs of this waltz are in the State Collection, Warsaw and an undated version is in the Mariemont Museum in Belgium. The latter was sold by Liepmannssohn in Berlin in 1907. A further autograph was discovered in 1967 in the Chateau de Thoiry near Paris, together with an autograph of op.70 no.1.
Laura Horsford was the daughter of General George Horsford, sometime Lieutenant Governor of the Bermudas. Chopin taught Laura's sister Emma, to whom op. 12, Variations brillantes on the rondo from Halévy's Ludovic, was dedicated.
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Maurice Brown, Chopin, An Index of his Works in Chronological Order, London, 1960, no. 92, p.90
Krystyna Kobylanska, Frédéric Chopin, Thematisch- Bibliographisches Werkverzeichnis, Munich, 1979, p.38
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