Holberg Suite

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The Holberg Suite, Op. 40, more properly "From Holberg's Time" (Norwegian: Fra Holbergs tid, German: Aus Holbergs Zeit), subtitled "Suite in olden style" (Norwegian: Suite i gammel stil, German: Suite im alten Stil), is a suite of five movements based on eighteenth-century dance forms, written by Edvard Grieg in 1884 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the birth of Dano-Norwegian humanist playwright Ludvig Holberg.

It exemplifies nineteenth-century music which makes use of musical styles and forms from the preceding century. Although not as famous as Grieg's incidental music from Peer Gynt, which is itself usually performed as arranged in a pair of suites, many critics regard the works as of equal merit.[1]


The Holberg Suite was originally composed for the piano, but a year later was adapted by Grieg himself for string orchestra. The suite consists of an introduction and a set of dances. It is an early essay in neoclassicism, an attempt to echo as much as was known in Grieg's time of the music of Holberg's era.[2]


The movements of the suite are:

  1. Praeludium (Allegro vivace)
    Orchesterwerke Romantik Themen.pdf
  2. Sarabande (Andante)
    Orchesterwerke Romantik Themen.pdf
  3. Gavotte (Allegretto)
    Orchesterwerke Romantik Themen.pdf
  4. Air (Andante religioso)
    Orchesterwerke Romantik Themen.pdf
  5. Rigaudon (Allegro con brio)
    Orchesterwerke Romantik Themen.pdf


  1. ^ Krellmann, Hanspeter. Edvard Grieg (1999), Reinbek: Rowohlt ISBN 978-3-499-50430-3
  2. ^ Mozart: Eine Kleine Nachtmusik, Serenata of London, from the CD booklet written by Leonard Burkat, 1987, MCD Records (barcode 0-7674-25162-2-2)

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