Bach - Brandenburg Concerto

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Melody

  • 5 principal motifs each baced on the interval of a 3rd
  • A: 1-2 in flute 2
  • B: 1-2 in solo violin then 3-6 in flute 2
  • C: 13-16 solo violin
  • D: 35-38 flute 2
  • E: 69-72 flute 1
  • Melodies based on scales and broken chords
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Rhythm and Metre

  • 3/8 feels like 1 dotted crotchet per bar and gives a joyous feel
  • Continuous semiquavers
  • Ties across bars produce syncopation
  • Hemiolas in 79-80
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T. For Texture

  • Bottom 3 staves closely linked
  • Counterpoint decorates chords
  • Homophony formed from unified instrumental lines
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Structure

  • 1-83: Ritornello in Gmaj
  • 83-137: Episode 1 - Dmaj in 103
  • 137-157: Shortened ritornello 2 in E minor
  • 157-209: Episode 2 includes opening in a minor
  • 209-235: Ritornello 3 in C major
  • 235-323: Episode 3 closes in b minor
  • 323-345: Ritornello 4 in b minor
  • 345-end: Ritornello 1 in Gmaj
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Harmony

  • Dissonant 7th chords and suspensions
  • Avoidance of cadences to move piece forward
  • Harmonic rhythm is usually one chord per bar but speeds up towards cadence points
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Instruments

  • Concertino (solo parts - flute violin)
  • Ripieno (continuo, harpsichord, bass)
  • Ripieno provides dynamic contrast, harmonic support and textural contrast
  • Vc and Double bass provide bassline
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Tonality

  • G major
  • Reinforced by cadences and pedals
  • Modulates frequently to related keys
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