Edexcel GCSE Music - Prelude by Chopin

Set of cards to remember key facts about Prelude number 15 in D flat major by chopin

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Harmony & Tonality

Harmony and Tonality

It's Diatonic- it has a definite key- D flat major

BUT it also has a few chromatic notes- this hides the major hamony so it the harmony ends up sounding ambiguos.

It has a key change into the tonic minor (to D flat major) C sharp minor

Near the end it returns to the major key and ends with a perfect cadence.

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Rythmn and Metre

Rythmn and Metre

It's in common, 4:4, time. It uses some triplets  and there are dotted rythmns too. There may be more to add here.

One unusual rythmic feature is the septuplet in bars 4 and 23, in bar 79 there is a dectuplet .  In the recorded performance rubato is sometimes used, this means that the pianist changes the length of some notes in order to make the music more expressive.  

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Structure and Form

Structure and Form

The piece is in ternary form (ABA). In the A section the melody is in the right hand whilst the accompaniment is in the left hand.  In the B section they swap and then reverts back again for the repeat of the final A section.   Also the A sections are in D flat major wheras the B sections in the C sharp minor and the B section has more dynamic varioation including soem crescendos and some fortissimos(ff). The piece ends with a short coda.

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Melody

Melody

At the start the melody is lyrical in the right hand and it is decorated with  ornaments like acciacatura and turn.  It features dotted rythmns and chromaticism.  In the B section the melody moves to the bass  and there are longer notes: more minims, semibrieves and crotchets as compared to the many quavers in section A. The melody of the B section starts with a rising stepwise sequence.  The whole piece is mainly made up of 4 and 8 bar phrases.

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Prelude number 15 in D flat major - Opus 28 - 'Raindrop' by Chopin was written in 1839.

Prelude simply means "brief opening that sets the mood".

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Texture

  • The piece's texture is melody and accompaniment although the parts swap between the hands
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Dynamics, Instrumentation/Timbre and Tempo

Dynamics

  • The A section is mainly piano with a few small crescendos and dimminuendos
  • The B section has more varied dynamics with some large crescendos from piano to fortissimo.
  • When it returns to the A section there is more than the original variation: p, f, and pp as well as a Ritenuto in the penultimate bar.

Instrumentation/Timbre

  • The piece is for piano.
  • At the beginning 'Sostenuto' is written meaning sustained.

Tempo

  • There is no tempo marking on the piece
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Comments

Stefan

this information was very useful brilli

Kate Gotel

thanksss!

Sujina


Wow. What did you end up getting for music GCSE in the end? I'm struggling so much with music! :(

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