Gcse Music Analysis Peripetie-Schoenberg

Peripetie- Schoenberg STYLE: Expressionism Features of expressionism: * Atonal (all notes have equal importance) * Expresses one intense emotional * Full use of the pitch range of instruments. * Timbre is regarded to be just as important as melody * Extremes in dynamics * Pieces are quite short CONTEXT: * Schoenberg was an Austrian composer who founded the Second Viennese School- a group of composers (including Berg and Webern, who were taught by Schoenberg in Vienna) who wrote Expressionist music. Peripetie is the fourth of his Five Orchestral Pieces, and this set work was of an experimental nature, and required a large orchestra. * First performance was given in 1912 in Proms, London. * The title means ‘A sudden reversal’- refers to the fact that ideas from the start of the movement return in reverse order towards the end.

* A new edition of the work Schoenberg wrote in 1922 * Schoenberg later developed serialism- 12 tone technique using a tone row. * This tone row can be transformed in 3 ways- retrograde, inversion, retrograde inversion. MELODY Angular or disjunct melodies, Schoenberg uses octave displacement, unexpectedly moving individual notes of a main melody into a different octave. * Made up of short, fragmented motifs, that are combined in different ways. In the first 18 bars alone, 7 different motifs are quickly introduced. * Large intervals * No predictability * Melodies are short and motivic developed in cell-like fashion * Many short motifs often played simultaneously * The full range of the orchestra and its instruments is used HARMONY/TONALITY * Dissonant harmony * Atonal * Use of hexachords Clashes within harmonies * No sense of key- non functional METRE * Metre changes from 3 4 to 2 4 to 4 4.

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TEMPO * Sehr rasch- very quick * Varied- some long, slow parts while some parts are quick RHYTHMS * Rhythms are complex and varied, changing quickly. * Rhythmic patterns are layered, creating a complex contrapuntal texture. INSTRUMENTATION * Required a large orchestra of at least 90 players (strings, woodwind, brass and percussion) * Huge variety of instrumental sounds and timbres used in a short time. Instrumentation changes rapidly throughout, creating many contrasts in timbre. Performers frequently play to the extremes of their range. * Brass dominate loud parts whilst clarinet and horns are used extensively for warmer textures * Instruments often feature as soloists and also in small ensembles * Use of mutes, pizzicato, and other effects, some unusual (eg.

Cymbals are played with both a mallet and a cello bow, and at one point the double basses play a tremolo very close to the bridge) * Motifs are shared between instruments (klangfarbenmelodie) TEXTURE * Mostly contrapuntal, occasionally monophonic/homophone * Extremes in texture throughout the piece Texture is at times very sonorous and full, other times very sparse. * Textures build up through use of techniques such as imitation and inversion. Final climax of the piece is created from 3 different canons heard at the same time. STRUCTURE * Hexachords and rhythmic ideas come back on two subsequent occasions, giving a sense of a return to the opening idea. * Structured in 5 sections, a free-rondo structure (ABACA), but with no structural reference points (eg.

Cadences). Returning ‘A’ sections developed to such an extent that they are hardly recognizable as statements of a theme at all.

DYNAMICS * Frequent sudden changes of dynamics, leading to extreme contrasts (ppp to fff) KEY WORDS: Hexachords- a group of six notes which can be played together to form a chord. Compliments of hexachords are constructed by taking the other 6 available semitones not used in the first hexachord. Cor anglais- lower version of oboe Contrabassoon- a large bassoon (sounds an octave lower than written in score) Tam-tam- a large gong Haupstimme- principal voice, the main melodic line. Nebenstimme- Secondary voice, the next most important melodic line after the principal voice.

2 or a3 – All 2 or all 3 of bassoons (for eample) should play the same notes divisi- The players on this line divide into groups. Bell up- brass players point the bell of their instrument upwards. 1 solo- A single person plays this line. +- Hand-stopped. The horn player inserts their hand further than usual into the belle.

Tremolo- note is rapidly repeated Klangfarbenmelodie (tone-colour melody), describes the concept of how different instrumental colours would contribute to the melody as well as the pitches themselves. Demonstrated well in Peripetie as the principal voice bounces rapidly from instrument to instrument.