Key Musical Features of Chopin: Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major

Some notes I made on this Set Work - suitable for anyone doing GCSE music edexcel.

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Preview of Key Musical Features of Chopin: Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major

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Chopin: Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major
Musical Features of Set Work: Chopin - Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major:
Structure: Ternary form (ABA)
Section A also has its own ABA structure.
The last section (A) is a return to the
opening melody. This repeat of Section
A is shorter and finishes with a brief
coda.
Rhythm and Tempo: Time signature = C (4/4 time).
Rubato ­ freedom of time.
The prelude uses unusual rhythmic
features such as a septuplet and a
dectuplet.
The piece is to be played `Sostenuto'
(sustained). It should be played in a
legato and unhurried manner.
Repeated quavers are used throughout
the piece.
Melody begins with a dotted rhythm
which is repeated a number of times in
Section A, helping to give it a lighter feel
than in Section B.
Melody: Section A has two main melodies. The
first of which is characterised by a falling
motif.
Section A has a lyrical melody
accompanied by quavers in the bass.
Section B has melodic interest mainly in
the left hand. The quavers are now
heard in the right hand. There is a
narrower range and is mostly made up
of longer notes (crotchets and minims).
Section C (second A section) starts with
a short monophonic melody.
The prelude is mostly made up of four-
and eight-bar phrases.
Tonality and Harmony: Section A is in Db major, the tonic key.
Section B is in C# minor, the enharmonic
minor.
In Section B a repeated G# creates a
pedal effect.
Section C (second A section) is in Db
major, the tonic key.

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Chopin: Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major
Sections A and B both end with an
imperfect cadence, but the whole
prelude ends with a perfect cadence.
The prelude uses mainly diatonic
harmony with occasional chromaticism.
Texture: Section A is homophonic.
In Section A, the melody in the right hand
is supported by broken chords in the left
hand.
Texture continued:
In Section B a repeated G# creates a
pedal effect.…read more

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Chopin: Prelude No. 15 in D flat Major
It is not virtuosic. Chopin concentrates on
creating a legato, singing tone.
Other Important Information: The piece is nicknamed the `Raindrop'
prelude because of the repeated
quavers throughout, the Ab/G# pedal
note, the falling motif and the
crescendos make the piece sound storm
like.
The prelude comes from a collection of
preludes by Chopin known as Op. 28
composed in 1839.…read more

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