The Contribution of the Lautari to the Compositions of George Enescu: Quotation and Assimilation of the Doina

Date of Completion

January 2012






The present dissertation examines quotations of the doina dance within several works by the composer George Enescu. It attempts to answer three important questions. First, have the Lauˇtari influenced the doina genre and Enescu's subsequent use of it? How does Lauˇtari performance practice differ from that of Romanian peasant musicians? Has Enescu quoted the doina faithfully, keeping it in its authentic form, and/or has he assimilated the style of that particular dance within his own music? ^ This study distinguishes quotations of lauˇtari music from quotations of other local Romanian traditions in Enescu's compositions. While the ethnomusicological literature on this repertory is fairly rich, its use in the context of Western European music has received scant attention. Enescu quoted the doina in the Poème Roumain, Op.1 (1897), the Second Romanian Rhapsody (1902), the Doina for Baritone, Viola, and Cello (1905), the First Piano Sonata (1924), the Third Piano Sonata (1925), the Third Violin Sonata (1926), and Impressions d'enfance for Violin and Piano, Op. 28 (1940). This dissertation analyzes these quotations, differentiates them from other quotations of Romanian folk music, and discusses the possible meanings of Enescu's inclusion of the quotations in the compositions. In addition, it discusses the degree to which Enescu's quotations are faithful to the spirit and characteristics of the Romanian and Romani doina. ^