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Bamboula, Op. 2, is a fantasy composition for piano written by American composer Louis Moreau Gottschalk during a delirium of typhoid fever in the French town of Clermont-sur-l'Oise in the summer of 1848.[1] Dedicated "à sa Majesté Isabelle II, Reine des Espagnes",[2] it is the first of the so-called set of four "Louisiana Creole pieces" that Gottschalk composed between 1848 and 1851.

Musical analysisEdit

Based on two Creole melodies, Musieu Bainjo and Quan' patate la cuite,[1][3] it was published with the subtitle of Danse des nègres at the Bureau Central de Musique on 22 April 1849 by the Paris publisher 'Escudiers', with many unauthorized copies being issued in Europe shortly thereafter.[4][5] Its first concert performance occurred on the evening of Tuesday 17 April 1849 at the Salle Pleyel during Gottschalk's second appearance as a professional pianist.[3][6]

The composition, written in the key of D-flat major, with a strongly rhythmically marked melody, is organized in three sections (A-A-B). The introduction begins with a concluding gesture in the bass range, mimicking a drum beat. The second is a transposition of the first theme, while the third is underlined by a heavily syncopated melody in the relative minor (B-flat minor). With a duple 2
time signature and an Allegro tempo marking, the composition features many shifting moods and virtuosic passages.


  1. ^ a b Starr, S. Frederick (2000). Louis Moreau Gottschalk. University of Illinois Press. p. 73. ISBN 0252068769.
  2. ^ Chase, Gilbert (1992). America's Music: From the Pilgrims to the Present. University of Illinois Press. p. 290. ISBN 0252062752.
  3. ^ a b All Music. "Bamboula, danse des nègres for piano, Op. 2, D. 13 (RO 20)". All Retrieved 5 July 2012.
  4. ^ Taruskin, Richard (2009). Music in the Nineteenth Century. Oxford University Press. pp. nn. ISBN 0195384830.
  5. ^ Pruett, Laura Moore (2007). Louis Moreau Gottschalk, John Sullivan Dwight, and the Development of Musical Culture in the United States, 1853--1865. ProQuest. p. 32. ISBN 0549467343.
  6. ^ Park, Jihyun (2009). Louis Moreau Gottschalk's Assimilation of African American Elements in Souvenir de Porto Rico (PDF). University of California. p. 19.

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