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Analysis- Schumanns Fantasiestucke op.73 no.

1 for Clarinet and Piano

Rhythm The rhythm in Robert Schumanns Fantasiestucke op.73 no.1 is generally polyrhythm. The 2 against 3 polyrhythm between the clarinet melody and triplet in the piano accompaniment is very prominent and is used throughout the piece. The melody is mainly built up of quavers and occasional crotchets and minims. Metre This piece is written in simple quadruple time, in which there are four crotchet beats in a bar. Every beats in the piano accompaniment part are made up of triplet. Tonality This piece is written in the key of A minor. The first section of A-B-A starts with the home key and modulated to its relative major key, C major in the middle section. It moves back to A minor in the following section and then to A major towards the end of the piece. The progressive tonality served to articulate the form of the piece. Melody The melody of this piece is constructed in an arch shape, in which it moves in undulating contour. Apart from the main melody played by the clarinet, the piano also carries a melody which functions as counter- melody. Harmony Harmony is a very important element in all music, particularly in the 19th century and in Schumanns music. The harmony in this piece is planned carefully to express the feeling of tenderness and expressiveness that Schumann intended. Chromatic harmonies such as secondary function chord are used extensively in this to give colors to the music. Deceptive resolution of harmony is also used. This could be seen in bar 57 where the dominant chord in the previous bar resolves deceptively to V7/IV, the secondary function harmony, instead of the expected chord I. This served to extend the piece with a brief section of coda. Texture Elements of both homophonic and polyphonic texture are presented in this piece. It can be clearly seen that the melody in the clarinet part is accompanied by the piano. However, the independent countermelody carried by the piano gives a polyphony element to the music. The clarinet plays a leading role throughout the piece, but the countermelody could also be seen anticipates the clarinet melody at times. Besides this, there is a dialogue between the melody of the clarinet and the piano. An example of this could be seen in the first measure of the piece, where the question (E-F) in the piano part is answered immediately by the clarinet.

Form This piece is written in ternary form, a form used extensively by Romantic composers to write character piece. There are three sections (ABA) in which the middle section is contrasting to the two outer sections. Unlike music in the Classical period, this piece starts in a more informal way. The phrase structure is asymmetrical, in which the length of each phrase is not balanced. Genre The genre of this piece is chamber music. It was written for a solo clarinet with piano accompaniment. Period This piece is written in the mid- 19th century (Romantic period), which was the period of Schumanns chamber music.