Haydn’s Symphony No. 92 in G Major (“Oxford”)


4 movements: 1. Adagio – Allegro Spiritoso, 2. Adagio, 3. Menuet: Allegretto, 4. Presto

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Known as the “Oxford” symphony b/c he performed it upon receiving an honorary doctorate from Oxford University in 1791

This piece is illustrative of many of the typical characteristics of a Haydn symphony, the model for all symphonies to come (Haydn was, after all, the “father of the symphony”)

Contrast (illustrative of sonata form)

Mozart’s Piano Concerto in D Minor, K. 466


3 movements: 1. Allegro, 2. Romance (Marie Antoinette…tea parties), 3. Rondo. Allegro Assai

Beethoven’s Symphony No. 3 in E-Flat Major (“Eroica”), Op. 55


4 movements: 1. Allegro con brio, 2. Marcia funebre: adagio assai, 3. Scherzo: Allegro vivace, 4. Finale: Allegro molto

Written about the heroism of Napoleon Bonaparte, although Beethoven’s opinion of him changed after he declared himself emperor (the original title of the work was “Bonaparte”).

Beethoven’s String Quartet in C-sharp Minor, Op. 131

7 movements: 1. Adagio Ma Non Troppo E Molto Espressivo, 2. Allegro Molto Vivace, 3. Allegro Moderato, 4. Andante Ma Non Troppo E Molto Cantabile, 5. Presto, 6. Adagio Quasi un Poco Andante, 7. Allegro
Opening movement is unusual slow, long fugue
2nd and 6th movements in 6/8, 3/4 respectively

Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 in B Minor, D. 759 (“Unfinished”)


2 movements: 1. Allegro moderato, 2. Andante con moto

Schubert’s Winterreise, D. 911

24 songs: Gute Nacht, Die Wetterfahne, Gefrorene Traenen, Erstarrung, Der Lindenbaum, Wasserflut, Auf dem Flusse, Ruckblick, Irrlicht, Rast, Fruhlingstraum, Einsamkeit, Die Post, Der greise Kopf, Die Krahe, Letzte Hoffnung, Im Dorfe, Der sturmiche Morgen, Tauschung, Der Wegweiser, Das Wirtschaus, Mut, Die Nebensonnen, Der Leiermann
Expresses the nostalgia of a lover revisiting in winter the haunts of a failed summer romance.
Schubert is widely considered first “romantic” composer, defined by his involvement with literature (read and set to music a great deal of poetry).

Schumann, Dichterliebe, Op. 48

16 songs (Lieder): Im wundershoenen Monat Mai, Aus meinen Traenen spriessen; Die Rose, die Lilie, die Taube; Wenn ich in deine Augen seh’; Ich will meine Seele tauschen; Im Rhein, im heiligen Strome; Ich grolle nicht; Und wussten’s die Blumen, die kleinen; Das ist ein Floten und Geigen; Hoer’ ich das Liedchen klingen; Ein Jungling liebt ein Maedchen; Am Lauchtenden Sommermorgen; Ich hab’ im Traum geweinet; Allnaechtlich im Traume; Aus alten Maerchen; Die alten, boesen Lieder
“Dichterliebe” means “A Poet’s Love” – what could be more romantic than that?
Treated the piano as “no mere accompaniment” to the voice in a song.

Berlioz’s Romeo et Juliette

Only the “instrumental” sections: Romeo seul – Grand fete; Scene d’amour; Scherzo La Reine Mab; Romeo au tombeau des Capulets
Dedicated to Paganini, an admirer and great patron
Berlioz felt the love scene was more effectively expressed without a vocal part.

Wagner, Die Walkuere (Act I)

Libretto by Wagner himself
Vorspiel and 3 scenes: Vorspiel is storm-/quake-like, an expression of the unchecked power of Wotan; scene 1 starts w/Siegmund bursting into a forest dwelling, and Sieglinde tends to him; they quickly fall in love (key of A Major); in scene 2, Siegmund meets Hunding, and tells his story; Hunding realizes he’s his enemy, but for the sake of hospitality allows him to stay the night; Siegmund poisons Hunding’s drink; they discover thru Sieglinde’s story about the sword at her wedding ceremony that they are siblings, but confess their love for each other and “embrace rapturously” nonetheless (scene ends in embrace)
First day of Der Ring des Nibelungen

Wagner, Tristan und Isolde

Just Prelude and Liebestod (“Love Death”)
Prelude was performed separately before premiere of opera (with concert ending); features the “Tristan chord,” remarkable for its dissonance, which is such that it makes the dominant 7th chord to follow seem fulfilling
Liszt gave name of “Liebestod” to love scene at end, and that name became popular, but Wagner preferred to call it “(Isolde’s) Transfiguration”; the “transfiguration” comes when, after Tristan has died, Isolde falls to his feet, seemingly transformed, united with him at last; this then leads finally to the resolution of the opera on B Major
Echoes of Berlioz’s Romeo et Juliette, esp in love scenes (“Scene d l’amour” for Berlioz and “Liebestod” for Wagner); Wagner greatly admired Berlioz
Unresolved nature of Wagner’s work so effectively creates sense of tension and desire
Really, the entire opera explores the theme of the relationship between love and death…