After over a year, I finished my orchestration of Bartók's 'With drums and pipes'. Naturally, I scored it for drums (timpani, bass drum, tenor drum and snare drum) and pipes (2 hobos, 1 clarinet, 2 bassoons; 2 trumpets, 2 trombones and 1 tuba). Technically, 'wind decet and percussion'.

I used 'Finale' software to test the results, but somehow the percussion in Finale is very poor (or I don't understand it well).

I scored some 'Bartók idiom', by using the felt timpani stick on the snare drum and hitting the snare drum in the center and 'at the extreme edge of the skin'. Hereby I have a very wide range of percussive sounds available, especially usuful for the coda.

I will visit the Bartók archive in Budapest on June 17th where I am granted a look at Bartók's own unpublished sketch of an orchestration of the first 31 measures. I wonder how close I am!

Anyone interested to see my orchestration? I am happy to e-mail it, just e-mail me at:

kenessey "at" zonnet "dot" nl

replace "at" and "dot" by "@" and "." and remove the spaces.
Robert Kenessy

.. it seems to me that the inherent nature [of the piano tone] becomes really expressive only by means of the present tendency to use the piano as a percussion instrument - Béla Bartók, early 1927.