Shostakovich Symphony No5 - Movement 3


Third Movement

Written in F# Minor. Aura of giref conveyed by the symphony's slow movement. Possibly composed in response to the excecution of Stalin's friend by Stalin's forces. Brass section is not used at all in this movement. Strings now divided into 8 parts instead of 5 - rich and expressive texture, added to by the harp. No relief from this sombre sound until the tierce de piccadie at the end. 4 different ideas, A,B,C  and D.

  • Figure 75 - A slow-moving, wistful melody is heard on the third violins. This is Idea A. From bar 7 the melody reaches out with some upwards leaps which start to convey some sense of loss. Three further lines of strings join at Figure 77 to enrich the texture. Doleful, falling chromatic-scale patterns become more significant
  • Idea A =
  • Idea B =
  • Idea C =
  • Idea D =
  • Figure 78 (Idea B) - Entry of first violins marks the second idea. 3 repeated marcato crotchets. The melodic line then transfers to the first cellos. Ascending bassline underneath. Cadences in B Minor just before figure 79.
  • Figure 79 (Idea C) - Solitary high flute, reminiscent of the first movement. Oscilating between 2 chords. Gentle harp accompaniment underneath. Reinforced by the entry of the…


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