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Monday, February 14, 2005

"From the Island of Bali" by Bartok

This piece by Bartok consists of 3 major sectional divisions. The first section consists of two phrases; the first phrase outlines the melodic ideas of this section giving it an expositional function. The piano alternates hands playing a very mysterious and sad melody, developing this theme through the rest of the section. The last two measures of this division could be considered to be a transitional function, as they slow down and diminuendo into the sudden change of the second section.
The Risoluto segment of this piece begins again with the first four measures of exposition. The hands are in unison, playing a much more aggressive and threatening melody. The melody moves into a developmental function when the hands no longer play together, rather parroting each other with the prior melody. There are no obvious transitional functions within the section; however, there is a possibility that the sustained D in the final measure of this middle segment could be considered as one.
The final section is almost entirely developmental, as there is no new material being presented to the listener. It is practically identical to the beginning of the piece. The final four measures of "From the Island of Bali" are one big chromatic chord. An obvious end and termination function for this song, as the chord relaxes into nothingness.

I found few transitional segments within this piece. There were no key modulations, with changes between sections being very abrupt.

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