Grade 6

D. Scarlatti - Sonata in A, Kp. 208, L. 238

Born in 1685, the same year as J. S. Bach and G. F. Handel, Domenico Scarlatti wrote 555 single-movement, mostly binary form sonatas for the harpsichord (some possibly intended for the early piano). Some of these works display a bold use of harmony, the influence of the Spanish guitar and of Iberian folk music.

To make the Sonata in A, K. 208 interesting on the piano, a wide dynamic palette is essential. The main line needs to be projected and shaped in vocal style, the left hand generally keeping out of the way. Play without pedal and your sound will likely be flat and boring; judicious use of the pedal will add significant colour but make sure not to blur the ornaments.

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Resources & links

  • This piece is available in print as part of the Piano Exam Pieces 2023 & 2024 Grade 6 publication here.
  • Click here to view open domain editions for this work.

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