Variations on a Simple Theme


Variations are a perennial favorite with students and teachers.  Locating the recurring theme can be a sort of musical game while those familiar notes make learning much easier. The more ambitious student may choose to play the entire group, but there is always the option to select just a few and finish up with a repetition of the original theme.

This collection includes the usual simple ornamented theme and then segues into more elaborate variations.  There are two selections in a minor key, which is a favorite diversion used by many composers to lend variety and give a little surprise to the ear.   The final variation also follows the popular format … it is livelier and considerably faster than the preceding pieces.

The students should be encouraged to vary the “mood” of each selection.

variation list


The key to playing variations well is to be constantly aware of the original theme and how it is woven into each variation.   And remember that the word “variation” means “difference”.  Be sure to emphasis the different mood of each selection by varying tempo, dynamics and body/hand movement.


variations clip


Click the link above to download full score










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