• Arthur Bliss
  • Bliss (One Step) (1923)

  • Novello & Co Ltd (World)

Orchestrated by Leighton Lucas and expanded by Victor Fleming. Used as interlude between ballets on Markova-Dolin Ballet tour in 1936

  • 2(pic)22242303perchpstr
  • Piano - see 'Two Piano Pieces'
  • 3 min

Programme Note

The one-step was a dance which became popular around 1910, later developing into the Bunny Hug, the Turkey Trot and the Rag. Bliss’ dance, entitled with his own name, is dedicated to Corelli Windeat and his London Dance Orchestra and was for a Punch and Judy Ball at the Savoy Hotel. In The Star of January 27, 1923, Bliss tells how he came to write the piece:

"I have been chaffed so much about my name that I’m calling it Bliss. My friends tell me that I was prophetically hinted at by Wordsworth in his immortal line ‘Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive’. I think musicians should be able to write any kind of music – opera, oratorio, chamber, songs, or even ragtime.”

The piece starts out with some modern bitonality but soon settles down to a diatonic swagger.