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By Ryan McClelland, Daniel Dorff

Regardless of the very good range in Brahms' scherzo-type activities, there was no entire attention of this point of his oeuvre. Professor Ryan McClelland presents an in-depth learn of those events that still contributes considerably to an realizing of Brahms' compositional language and his inventive discussion with musical traditions. McClelland particularly highlights the position of rhythmic-metric layout in Brahms' song and its courting to expressive that means. In Brahms' scherzo-type routine, McClelland lines differences of fundamental thematic fabric, demonstrating how the connection of the preliminary tune to its next types creates a musical narrative that gives structural coherence and generates expressive that means. McClelland's interpretations of the expressive implications of Brahms' fascinatingly elaborate musical buildings often have interaction concerns without delay proper to functionality. This illuminating booklet will entice tune theorists, musicologists engaged on nineteenth-century instrumental song and performers.

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Piano Sonata in C Major, Op. 1 Compared to the scherzo from the F-minor Sonata, the one from the C-major Sonata is more ambitious and more effective. The scherzo and the trio are each about 100 measures long, and each presents a continuous rounded binary form. Both strongly project four-measure units throughout, but there is a cautious deployment of beat-level grouping dissonance. As in the scherzo from Op. 2, there are some not fully convincing events, but in this movement they contribute to larger motivic and tonal structures, specifically a prevalence of scalar figures and a fascination with various melodic and harmonic treatments of .

220. 4 includes the scherzo’s structural close (mm. 84–5) and codetta (mm. 85–100). With the arrival of the background dominant at m. 81, the grouping dissonance implicit in the scherzo’s many descending lines becomes explicit for the first time. The barrenness of mm. 81–4 hardly makes it one of Brahms’s finest passages, but it suggests a budding interest in metric narrative: the scherzo’s hidden tension at last explodes, and it does so when the scherzo’s harmonic tension peaks. 4 Brahms, Piano Sonata, Op.

60. Though not published until 1875, the first movement of Op. 60 was conceived in 1855—only three years after this scherzo. In Op. 60 this slithering progression fits into the foreboding atmosphere, whereas in Op. 2 it seems a bit incongruous. Given the clear allusion to folk instruments in the piano writing in the trio, this series of chords almost comes off as an attempt to cultivate a deliberately unlearned progression. Yet this interpretation is undermined by the start of the second reprise, which inverts the chromaticism into rising, hopeful motions that lead to the retransitional dominant and the pompous grandioso rounding, which is a reference to a D-major passage (also marked grandioso) in the second variation of the slow movement.

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