• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss ways in which the first movement of Beethoven's Third Symphony 'Eroica' is revolutionary

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Discuss ways in which the first movement of Beethoven's Third Symphony 'Eroica' is revolutionary In order to discuss how Beethoven's Third Symphony 'Eroica' is revolutionary I will break this essay down into several parts. To begin I will look at what Beethoven's inspiration for the piece was and how it effected certain factors, primarily the title. Information from critics at the time the piece was first performed will then be addressed, looking at how it was regarded as different. Due to time and more developments in music, especially in harmony, since 1805 it can prove quite difficult for a person of the twenty-first century to recognise and appreciate how different and daring the piece would have seemed when first written. To follow this there will be an in depth comparison to Beethoven's First Symphony in C major, Op.21. I have chosen to use this piece as it has been described as an almost perfect textbook example of Classic sonata form. From this it will be possible to see how and why principles used in the third symphony were revolutionary and new at the time. Symphony No.3 in E? major 'Eroica' Op.55 was first performed publicly on April 7th 1805 and was conducted be Beethoven himself, but the score was not published until 1821 by N. Simrock of Bonn, (Edition Number 1973) and it is believed that the whole symphony was written in parts between 1801 and 1804. ...read more.

Middle

It may be noted that most of the instruments are doubled up in octaves. There are four bars before the first end of the repeat bars appears in the third symphony, the introduction basically being the tonic chord repeated. This lack of introduction is quite different from the classical sonata form previously seen, and unlike the first symphony, the home key is established immediately. Once the expositions have been reached there are many more contrasting differences. The length is the most obvious factor, Symphony 1's exposition being 96 bars in length and Symphony 3's being 155. 'Most movements in sonata form contain at least two clearly defined themes',10 and this is true in the first symphony. The first theme appears in the first violins at bar 13, and the second, again by the first violins at the upbeat to bar 34. The first theme in the third symphony is quite apparent also, primarily displayed by the cellos in bars 2-5, although it is the first four notes that are often considered as the theme. As for the second theme, there are several possibilities. Some believe it enters at bar 45 with the oboes, and initially this is what I believed. However, some view this as a 'bridge to the secondary theme section',11 which begins at bar 57. When comparing the sketches made by Beethoven this theory of bars 45 - 57 being a bridge looks true, due to the theme of descending not appearing in his sketches. ...read more.

Conclusion

The Eroica's length, the nature of the thematic material and it's manipulation, the emotional depth and range, the harmonic daring, and the handling of the orchestra - all these set it apart from any earlier symphonies.16 1 A friend of Beethoven 2 Prof. Dr. Wilh Altmann in Ludvig Van Beethoven. Symphony No. 3 Op.55, pg I of the Foreword. 3Claude V. Paulisca. (1996) Norton Anthology of Western Music volume 2. 3rd ed.London: W.W. Norton and Company, Inc. p277. 4 Author unknown. (17th April 1805), 'Vienna, 17 April 1805'. Der Freym�thige oder Berlinisch Zeitung f�rgebildete und unbefangene Leser 3. Berlin. in The Critical Reception of Beethoven's Compositions by his German Contemporaries, volume 2. ed (2001) Wayne M. Senner. London. University of Nebraka Press. p.15. 5 Author Unknown. (1st May 1805), 'Vienna, 9 April'. Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung 7. Leipzig. In Wayne M. Senner, 2001, p.17. 6 Wayne M. Senner, 2001, p.17. footnote 2. 7 Philip G. Downs. (1992) Classical Music. London. W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. p.592 8 Philip G. Downs (1992) p.592 9 Philip G. Downs (1992) p.592 10 Reinhard G. Pauly. (1973) Music in the Classic Period, 2nd ed. London. Prentice-Hall International, inc. p.39 11 Claude V. Palisca (1996) p.282. 12 Claude V. Palisca (1996) p.277. 13 Philip G. Downs (1992) p.598. 14 Reinhard G. Pauly (1973) p.39. 15 Reinhard G. Pauly (1973) p.191-2. 16 Reinhard G. Pauly (1973) p.192. - 1 - ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our University Degree Music section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related University Degree Music essays

  1. Analysis of Haydn's Piano Sonata in E Flat, Hob XVI/49

    However, the motive here is being filled with different notes, giving it a tonality of C minor. Haydn also cleverly merges two separate motives to form a complete phrase at bars 84 to 86. The first half of the phrase is likely to origin from the running semiquaver passages at

  2. Concert review

    instrumental breaks which include melody tunes, interrupted by breaks, with an accompaniment of persistent and repetitious rhythm that features the electric guitar which this resembles earlier styles of spirit of country and western.

  1. The kitchen, a 'realist text' is written by Arnold Wesker, a 'naturalistic writer'.

    Dexter used similar techniques in his direction of the play. So now we have a background buzz that is a constant burden to performers and audience alike, we have an instrumental effect with the use of empty utensils and we have also got a movement sequence that involves the whole cast working as one.

  2. Analysis of Prokofiev Sonata No. 7

    This shows that the motive has added emphasis on it as the motive and its derivations are nearly present right from the start to the end of the movement. The next motive, which derivations can be found easily in the second and third movement, is present across b.

  1. To what extent did the composers of symphonies in the Soviet Unionmanage to comply ...

    Therefore, this symphony displays an element of individuality despite state control. However, this line of rebellion was refined in the following symphony, when he reverts to traditional symphonic practices thus underlining his obligation to comply with state musical policy. Whilst composing his fourth symphony Shostakovich was severely criticised in the

  2. The Haas Effect - Echoes and Location

    a person will not hear it even if the echo is up to 10bD louder than the source. This is an example of human sensory inhibition which applies to all our senses. The graph below help to show the effects experienced for different time gaps.

  1. "A notation should be directed to a large extent towards the people who read ...

    it as being 'exact': I had never written the pieces in staff notation until I wrote for the orchestra. Then I fell in love with the idea of having things so exact, with this notation, that I called up all my musicians [guitarists] and asked ''can you guys read music?''

  2. Short Analysis of "Five Pieces for Orchestra op. 16, mvt. 1" by Arnold Schoenberg

    16. “The title of the piece’s movements, which were reluctantly added by the composer after the work’s completion upon the publisher’s request, are: "Vorgefühle", Sehr rasch. ("Premonitions", very fast.) "Vergangenes", Mäßige Viertel. ("The Past", moderate.) “Farben", Mäßige Viertel. ("Summer Morning by a Lake: Chord-Colors", moderate.)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work