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Wednesday, March 09, 2005

"Were'er you Walk" by Handel

This piece is very flexible for personal interpretation. I think it could be heard differently depending one whether a person really listens to the vocal line or to the instrumental parts. When I listen to the vocal accompaniement I hear cadences frequently but after studying the vocal line and the emphasis of the sentence structure, I would say the A section is an asymmetrical contrasting period. The first phrase ends on measure 8 after the vocalist has concluded the word "shade" and there is a semi colon. This first phrase ends on an IAC. Next there is a phrase that ends on a PAC in measure 16, followed by a 3 measure cadential extension. Because this section ends in the same key it began, it is closed. The B section really pops out of the texture due to the preparation at the end of A. The entire A section had been very soft. Then when the vocalist stops singing, the strings are forte on the extension. (I think that's funny. The piece only gets loud when the main focus of the piece stops.) The B section is then very shocking because it has a huge dynamic change to piano and the tonality shifts to the relative g minor. This B section is much shorter than the A. The first phrase of this section is 3 measures long and ends on a PAC is g minor. The next phrase reemphasizes the importance of the sentence and then modulates to c minor, ending on a PAC. Since both cadences are so strong, I think they form a phrase group. Then there is a da capo back to the beginning. This piece is simple ternary form becuase the A section returns and is repeated while the B section remains independent.

4 comments:

Ihearthautbois said...

You're right it is pretty funny that everything seems to crescendo to fill up the fact that the vocal line has stopped...
I like the idea of the piano really bringing the piece into the B section in G minor. Good thinking!

John Styx said...

The orchestra rising to fill the void left by the voice is VERY common in Baroque opera. I agree it sounds a bit off, but Handel does it all the time in his arias. I also agree that the dynamic shift really points out the difference in the sections (especially after the crescendo).

katie said...

I liked how you pointed out the fact that you can hear this several different ways. I think I heard it like a vocalist... I gave more of my attention to the vocal line. It's interesting to hear what instrumentalists hear vs. what vocalists hear. Good analysis... you always do such a great in depth job.

Mr. Luxury Yacht said...

Looking at vocal music can be quite different especially during an aria because most of the interest is on the singer and all the ornamentations and beautiful singing. This often means the chord basis below is simpler and slower than many instrumental works.