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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Die Mainacht

Chord Analysis:

m. 33: I64 V7
m.34: iii I64
m. 35: I6 vi I64
m.36: IV V42/IV
m. 37: IV6 IV7
m. 38: V65/V V
m. 39: I iii III7
m. 40: vi IV viio65
m. 41: vi6 V/IV
m. 42: IV
m. 43: I64 V7/IV
m. 44: V7/N
m. 45: N N6
m 46: V7
m 47: V7
m 48: I V7/IV
m. 49: I
m. 50: V7/IV IV64
m. 51: ii half dim. 42 I

The climax of "Die Mainacht" occurs in measure 41 when the soprano sings the high F#. At this point in the song, the harmony is a vi6 to a V/IV. This chord progression was foreshadowed earlier in measure 36. The first root position one chord that occurs in this section is measure 48. This is informative because it allows the singer to observe that this section has different harmonies. It allows the performer to be aware of the unique chords that underly the solo. Phrasing does appear to be different from the pianist and the singer. The word "Morgenrot" would not be a good ending place. I see it as a break or a pause. The word literally means rosy dawn, and the singer actually continues to sing the purpose of the dawn. In addition, when Morgenot is sung a iv chord is being played underneath it. Measure 44 is not a phrase ending. The word "heisser" is an adjective describing a tear. There is a comma after the word to imply that there is more description. In addition, the chord being played in that measure is a V7/N. It's a unique chord but it is actually leading up to two more measure of Neapolitan chords. It's not ending a phrase, but rather its becoming a climax to one. If I were performing it I would try to create a sense of anticipation, letting my audience know that the phrase continues. Harmonically, the chords structures seem to travel from a the tonic to dominant, to predominant that finally tonic chords. It is a basic chord progression, but it is also a gratifying one. It is a very intense performance for the singer, so the postlude serves as a sense of calmness and stillness.

1 comment:

Scott said...

There are some good ideas, but the essay seems to wander from question answer to question answer, especially in the first half.

How would you create a sense of anticipation? Would you crescendo, or slow down, or add portamento?