Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor Spider Diagram

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  • Brahms Piano Quintet in F minor
    • Romantic Style
      • Piano quintet - typical
      • Technically demanding - virtuosic
        • Wide tessituras
      • Scherzo and trio form - typical
      • Functional harmony and chromatic chords
      • Wide variety of textures
      • Mostly functional tonality
        • Modulations to both related and distant keys
    • Texture
      • Start
        • Dominant cello pedal
        • Violin I and viola in octaves, piano in octaves
        • Free imitation in piano - polyphonic texture
      • Bars 13 - 18 - heterophony - violin I and viola
      • 3rd theme - homophonic theme
      • Central section of scherzo is FUGAL
        • Starts with viola
        • Counter-subjects in LH of piano
      • Trio
        • Melody-dominated homophony
        • Introduces pedals
    • Structure
      • Scherzo and Trio structure
      • Overall ternary form (ABA) - Scherzo, Trio, Scherzo
      • 3 Themes
      • Trio also in ternary (ABA) form
    • Tonality
      • C minor tonality (general)
      • Modulates constantly
        • Both closely related and distant key modulations
      • Tonic major used frequently (C maj) e.g. 3rd theme
      • Cadences and pedals establish tonality
      • Distant keys: Eb minor (in fugato) and B maj (in trio)
    • Harmony
      • Functional harmony
      • Chromatic harmony
        • German augmented 6th chord (bar 5-6)
        • Diminished 7th chords
      • Very few perfect cadences -propells music forward using frequent imperfect cadences
        • Prefers to use plagal cadences (IV-I) instead
      • Circle of 5ths (starting bar 213 - in trio)
      • Tierce de Picardie at end
    • Melody
      • Three themes
        • SECOND theme - 'knocking' y motif and then 'turn x'
        • THIRD theme - 'turn x' from 2nd theme augmented -
        • FIRST theme - broken chord style - rising sequence
      • Fragmenting melody lines (making shorter)
      • Sequences and repetition used
    • Rhythm and Metre
      • All in duple time
        • Mainly in compound duple time but 2nd theme in simple duple time
      • Frequent syncopation (e.g. start - violin I and viola)
      • Augments phrases in 3rd theme
      • First counter-subject in piano at bar 67 has staccato quaver pattern

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