Beethoven symphony 1 - 2nd movement

Exposition - texture and melody, 1st subject

  • The movement begins with a fugal opening (a fughetta)
  • The melody is 6 bars long and introduces the anacrusis motif and dotted motif, outlining the triad of F - light and elegant
  • The first fugal entry is on violin 2 (monophonic), followed by viola/lower strings
  • There is some contrary motion
  • The texture gradually unfolds becoming polyphonic
  • The growth in texture is matched by dynamics; entries are pp but crescendos in tutti, matched by legato articulation - creates a warm sound
  • 7-bar answering phrase functions as transition
  • Played on violins in octaves and flute
  • Uses dotted rhythm
  • Accompanied by chords on beat 1 and 3 (do not call them 'syncopated'), and quavers on horn (dominant pedal emphasised)/viola
  • Ends with 3 homophonic quavers
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Exposition - texture and melody, 2nd subject

  • Two note anacrusis motif (fragmented b1) used briefly in rising sequence (although the whole phrase (anacrusis motif +dotted rhythm) is in rising sequence)
  • This is on strings, with 4-quaver accompaniment figure in cello (not bass, for lighter timbre)
  • The sparser texture is marked with p dynamics and staccato articulation
  • Second phrase uses full anacrusis motif, and the bassoon/horn join in
  • On repeat, the woodwind take the melody
  • Violin 1 play a counter melody (descending staccato semiquaver arpeggio), wind join in with bits of this
  • The 2nd subject group continues with a dotted figure in imitation, derived from b3 of the first subject (violin 1 against other strings, minus bass)
  • Piano dynamic and staccato articulation
  • On repeat at b46, the imitation is between all strings and oboe/bassoon
  • Contrasting forte dynamic with basses back in
  • Then tutti (minus timpani and brass) play chords with sforzandos on 2nd beat of the bar (typical Beethoven)
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Exposition - texture and melody, codetta

  • ·         Dotted semiquaver rhythm (dominant pedal) in timpani (for the first time), derived from b3
  • ·         Triplet melodic figure on flute and violin 1 (staccato and in octaves)
  • ·         Antiphonal hemiola quaver figure on other instruments (wind against strings)
  • ·         Trumpets play a sustained/repeating pedal note (at long last)
  •    Ends with fragment of b1 (anacrusis) then opening motif as a cadential figure (strong 5^1), first violin/flute answered by tutti
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Exposition - harmony, 1st subject

  • F major, melody outlines F triad
  • Harmony alternates between I and V (F and C)
  • Tonal answer (dominant) in b6
  • Dominant pedal on horn and inverted dominant pedal on flute
  • Imperfect cadence in b18/19
  • 1st subject ends on imperfect cadence b25/26
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Exposition - harmony, 2nd subject

  • Domiant chord ending of 1st subject treated like modulaton, now in C major
  • Mini cycle of 5ths (A7 Dm G7 C), can call it a passing modulation to Dm
  • Imperfect cadence in b34
  • Repeats, ending in perfect cadence
  • In dotted section, passes through Am and Dm
  • ii, cadential 6-4 in C
  • Am, Inverted cycle of 5ths starting on C7
  • ii, cadential 6-4 in C
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Exposition - harmony, codetta

  • G (dominant) pedal on several instruments
  • Harmony centred around tonic (2nd inversion) and dominant (C and G7)
  • Ends on a perfect cadence in C
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Development - texture and melody, b64-71

  • Two note anacrusis motif (derived from 1st subject, used in 2nd subject) on violin 1, extended to form a Cm ascending arpeggio
  • Strings gradually added, violin 2 joins in parallel motion then contrary motion with other strings
  • Accompanied by sustained woodwind chords, gradually expanding texture
  • FF homophonic two note anacrusis 
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Development - texture and melody, b65-100

  • String accompaniment (and bassoon joins in), chordal dotted rhythm derived from b3 of first subject and used in the codetta, staccato and lively
  • Two note anacrusis motif from 2nd subject in imitation between oboe/bassoon and flute
  • Interval first a minor 7th, then a major 6th
  • Repeated in descending sequence at b77
  • Timpani takes over dotted rhythm (tonic pedal, C), pedal also on horn/trumpet
  • Anacrusis motif played in antiphony, firstly between tutti (except timps)/clarinet
  • Then between wind/strings as a hemiola figure
  • At b89, heliola figure played in tutti
  • Tonic pedal on horn and timpani playing a roll
  • Tutti chords
  • Block chords interdispersed with 1st violin dotted figure (derived from b3 of first subject)
  • Two more anacrusis figures on oboe/bassoon over violin 1 figure, which becomes like a melody
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Development - harmony, b64-71

  • Ascending Cm arpeggio
  • Ab7 - Db (modulates to Db)
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Development - harmony, b71-100

  • Now in Db major
  • Two bar harmonic rhythm
  • Chords I and V used (with inversions)
  • Modulation to Bbm (relative minor) (via F7, b77
  • Returns to C (the dominant) via Db aug 6th (Italian)
  • Harmonic rhythm changes (now one chord per bar)
  • Tonic pedal (C) on timpani
  • Harmony from b81, employs a number of diminished 7ths with are substitutes for dominant 7ths in a cycle of 5ths (give a couple of examples but don't write all the chords out: G#dim7 to Am, as a substitute for E7)
  • Interrupted cadence in Am breaks cycle of 5ths (uses substitute chord G dim 7 for E7, then Fm)
  • Block chords on C7 (3rd inversion the 2nd inversion), dominant preparation for the recapitulation in F                                                                                                                                                                                                               
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Recapitulation, first subject - texture and melody

  • (These are the differences from the exposition - see exposition cards for more detail)
  • First subject still begins on second violin but this time with a cello countermelody (semiquavers)
  • Bassoon enters and 'overtakes' violins, continuing the subject along with the violas, whilst both violin parts play semi-quaver counter melody
  • Texture builds with the ret of the fugal entries
  • 7 bar answering phrase similar, with no horn semiquavers, and celli/basses play similar semiquaver line to the violas
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Recapitulation, second subject/codetta - texture a

  • Begins as in exposition with melody in the strings, with addition of flute on descending dotted motif
  • Repeat similar to exposition - woodwind with violin counter melody
  • Next passage (dotted motif) largely the same, with addition of all woodwind instruments imitating the strings on repeat (not just oboe/bassoon)
  • Codetta is virtually identical in exposition and recapitulation
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Recapitulation - harmonic differences to expositio

  • Second subject still approached by C
  • 2nd subject/codetta now in F
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Coda - melody and texture

  • Continues from slightly altered ending to codetta (instead of being a cadential figure, the motif continues into the full 1st subject melody)
  • 1st subject is no longer a fughetta
  • Begins with bassoon/violin 1, texture the expands in b164 (oboe, horn, other strings)
  • Melody in parallel 3rds, contrary motion between oboe and violins/horns on descending dotted motif
  • Violins play dominant pedal of staccato semiquavers
  • 1st subject was originally 6 bars long and so not periodically phrased (phrased 4 bars, 2 bars - perhaps draw a diagram of this if there is time in exam), 7th bar marked next fughetta entry
  • In coda, as melody is no longer a fughetta, 2 bars are added to the melody to make the phrasing periodic
  • Previous phrase repeated a tone up at b170 (ascending sequence)
  • From b175 this phrase is fragmented, first as two bars and then as 1 (diagram), in descending sequence
  • Cadential figure from b180 with semiquaver accompaniment on upper strings
  • Then the two note anacrusis motif is played repeatedly by oboe with horns imitating with repeated quavers, accompanied by the dotted figure and bassoon pedal
  • Dotted motif extended by violins as a descending scale, contrary motion with flute
  • Ends with a triadic variant of 2 not anacrusis notif in antiphony with acciaccaturas vlns/flute
  • Ends with the whole of b1 in tutti as cadential figure
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Coda - harmony

  • Begins in F leading on from codetta
  • 1st subject used, which relies on tonic (F) and dominant (C7)
  • Dominant pedal in violins (staccato semiquavers)
  • Melody ends on an imperfect cadence which helps create room to modulate
  • C# in b170 causes us to expect a modulation to Dm (of which C# is leading note)
  • C# is actually just a chromatic passing note and the next chord is Gm, to which the music modulates
  • This allows the previous phrase to be repeated a tone up (ascending sequence)
  • More chromatic passing notes in b174
  • Fragmentation on Bb and F
  • b177-178 brief cycle of 5ths D7-G, C7-F (harmony for descending sequence)
  • iib then cadential 6-4 in F in b182: Gm, F/C, C7, F (iib, Ic, V, I)
  • b182-190 uses V7 and I, following on from chromatic passage (typical of Beethoven)
  • Triadic varient/acciaccaturas use chords I and V
  • Ends on perfect cadence in F
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