Klarinet Archive - Posting 000544.txt from 1999/10
From: Tony@-----.uk (Tony Pay)
Subj: Re: [kl] The first two bars
Date: Mon, 18 Oct 1999 20:23:35 -0400
On Tue, 19 Oct 1999 00:54:40 +0100, Tony@-----.uk (I) said:
> This 'going' means that you can't see the 'cell' of the Mozart
> concerto as just the first bar, and therefore as consisting of the
> falling third, because the first two bars are joined together too
I have to say this again more carefully, because it's easy to
The first two bars are clearly *related*. One aspect of this
relationship could be that the first bar is
(1) stressed related to the second bar, or
(2) equal in stress to the second bar, or
(3) less stressed than the second bar.
If you live in a world in which there is only one dimension of stress,
then how we make the choice between (1) (2) and (3) may well influence,
and be influenced by, how we think of the third bar, which is a
repetition and diminution of the first two bars.
However, I would rather sidestep that issue by saying that the first bar
is stressed in a different way to the second bar. It is given weight,
while the second bar is given impulse. The upshot is to allow the
second bar to dance more than the first, by making the phrase shapes
come away faster.
All this, I hasten to add, is achieved without *separating* the two
You might say that the effect is not far from a 'going' if you consider
music to move away from cantabile toward 'dance', and saying that
wouldn't be inconsistent with the rhythmic viewpoint on classical music.
On the other hand, the modern, 'swooning' view I was talking about
really ignores rhythm and stress altogether in favour of something
rather like 'process from nothing'. The beginning of the first bar is
then perceived almost entirely as a preparation for, and crescendo to,
the second bar.
So the modern view kills off the falling minor-thirdishness.
As I've said before, the essential quality of the classical style is
to make phrasing, metre and harmony all *rhythmic* structures, normally.
Thus they all move periodically from tension to relaxation, or move
periodically from stress to lightness, normally.
The 'normally' is important, because there are occasions in which it's
desirable to do something that isn't normal, to create a special effect.
So you *could* say, well, I think that the first two bars of the Mozart
concerto are bars in which such a special effect is justified.
But, I don't think so. It's two falling minor thirds, and you gain such
power from realising that, and developing it later, (the second subject
is 'rising minor thirds', for example) that in my book you'd be a fool
to throw away the opportunity to have it 'normal' to begin with.
But you do what you want;-)
_________ Tony Pay
|ony:-) 79 Southmoor Rd Tony@-----.uk
| |ay Oxford OX2 6RE GMN family artist: www.gmn.com
tel/fax 01865 553339
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