Wordsworth's Poem of the Mind: An Essay on the Prelude.

Read the full-text online edition of Wordsworth's Poem of the Mind: An Essay on the Prelude (1991)

This technical difficulty also makes musical interpretation difficult. Like all of Chopin’s technical pieces, the focus is not on the technique, but the music. And while the technique serves to make the musical ideas possible, this does not always mean that it makes them simple to express! This prelude is one of the most impassioned of the set. It screams and weeps, taking the listener to the depths of a haunted and tormented soul. The expression is far more complicated and inexpressible than simply this, though, and like all Chopin, it is up to the listener to make what he or she will out of the piece.

Even though it is only sixteen bars, this is a prelude of infinite beauty and grace. The brief, slow, almost lazy melody eventually forms a climax that is recognized more by its subtle musical nuances than a dramatic dynamic change. For in the Prelude No. 7, the pianist must be extraordinarily gentle. In fact, this prelude could be seen as the epitome of Chopin’s unique touch. It is said that his (soft playing) was so exquisite, so intricate, and so well controlled that he did not at all require any to produce desired contrasts. And so it is with this prelude. If one has a masterful enough touch, there is no need for a to express the contrast. It can all be done with subtle variations of careful playing.

As seemingly simple as it is, this prelude has endured as one of Chopin’s moist famous works. Despite the straightforward melody, it overflows with emotion. Sadness is perhaps an appropriate word, but the simplicity of the word itself fundamentally understates the delicate beauty and subtle nuances in the piece. It also misses the tones of oppression and even restrained despair that are subtle but nevertheless make their presence felt. Chopin requested that this piece be played at his funeral, and this may give the listener (or the music analyst!) insight into what Chopin intended as he wrote this piece.

Essays On The Prelude By William Wordsworth - MIT CSAIL

As with nearly all of Chopin’s works, however, the technique is only the first step. After comes the problem of the music itself. The Prelude No. 2 is certainly among the most bizarre pieces that Chopin ever wrote. This can be seen in the not very appreciative comments attached to it over the years. The Polish pianist Jan Kleczynski, when playing the set of twenty-four, preferred to just repeat the first prelude and skip over this one! Admittedly, the melody is not quite as forceful as those of some of the other preludes, and the piece as a whole is just completely bleak. Unlike some of Chopin’s other “dark” compositions, this one is simply morbid and macabre. There are no occasional moments of beauty or a wonderfully crafted, flowing melody that sounds like a voice. Yet somehow, despite the jarring, somewhat un-Chopin-esque dissonance generated by the two hands, it still remains an effective (if eccentric) piece and manages to demonstrate the poignancy and expression (if not the harmony) of a Chopin masterwork. Thus, although not a significant technical difficulty, this piece eventually presents a not inconsiderable interpretational challenge.

Revolutionary War: The Prelude essays

This preludes uses what I can only think to call the "chromatic slip down technique." While it would be possible to label all the ensuing chords with function symbols or Roman numerals, few of them would resolve in the way they are "supposed" to resolve. The F# diminished seventh chord in the second half of the second measure, for example, could be called a viiº7/III, except the chord moves into a F7 triad, which is, what exactly?—V7/bIII in the relative major? Similarly the E7 chord in measure 4 would be called a V7/IV in traditional harmonic progressions, but it does not move in any way towards A minor.

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View Essay - Prelude to Jumping in the River from ENGLISH AP at Point Grey Secondary. Prelude to Jumping in the River Colin Wang November 24, …

I may be making this prelude sound too much like the one preceding it; they are structurally similar, with a left hand that is relatively complicated compared to the right. Although this is true, the pieces themselves are completely different! While the Prelude No. 2 is a forbidding and dark landscape, this one is a run through a sunny, grassy meadow. The left hand ostinati here are everything that the ones of the previous prelude are not – swift, lively, almost joyful. The right hand melody only serves to fortify the claim that the two preludes are completely different, for all their structural similarity. The entire piece manages to convey an expression of unrefined, carefree happiness. It is not overly elegant or graceful, but exceptionally beautiful. The modulations convey an expression of openness and improvisation, making the piece flow even more.

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The piece’s intended character is somewhat ambiguous until one observes the tempo indication – . Although one could probably not classify the piece as truly agitated, this stresses that the piece is to be played fervently, and more intensely than some of the gentler preludes. Even so, the melody alone sounds rather ephemeral and ultimately even insignificant. It is meant to be so, as this prelude is nothing without its accompaniment, which lends it subtle qualities not found in observing just the melody itself. It takes the lightest and most masterful touch to blend the melody and accompaniment in this tiny gem of a piece to produce the delicate, beautiful sound appropriate for this delicate, beautiful piece.