Distinction Between Bipartite And Tripartite Forms
The Sonatine Form
T The Second Rondo Form
The Necessity Of Form In Music
The Third Rondo Form
Classification Of The Larger Forms
Enlargement By Repetition
The Principal Song
Cadences In General
Random Music Lessons
The Sonatine Form
Locating The Cadences
The Sonata-allegro Form
When any section of a higher form starts out with a
perfectly definite structural intention, pursues this intention for a
time (sufficient to establish it), but then insensibly diverges and
gradually adopts a new modulatory direction,--as transition into the
following section,--the form is said to be dissolved. Such dissolution
takes place, naturally, within the later section of the theme, or
Part, or whatever it may be, whose actual, definite ending in the
expected key is thus frustrated. For instance, the second (or third)
Part of a theme may be dissolved; or the last phrase of a period or
double-period; or the repetition of a phrase. And the dissolution is
invariably applied before a transition or re-transition, as a means of
interlocking the factors of the form more closely and coherently.
Therefore it is a process peculiarly adapted to the higher designs of
composition, and is seldom omitted in the sonata-allegro form. For an
illustration, see Beethoven's sonata, op. 14, No. 2, first movement:
The Principal theme is a Two-Part Song-form; Part I, a period, from
measures 1 to 8; Part II begins in measure 9, and has every appearance
of becoming also a period; its Antecedent phrase closes in measure 12,
its Consequent begins in measure 13--but its end, as Second Part, in
the usual definite manner, cannot be indicated; the key is quietly
changed from G to D, and then to A, in obedience to the call of the
Subordinate theme (beginning in measure 26), into which these last 10
or 12 measures have evidently been a Transition. The Second Part of
the Principal theme therefore includes the transition; but where the
Second Part (as such) ends, and the transition (as such) begins, it is
impossible to point out accurately. The definition of this Principal
theme is, Two-Part form with dissolved Second Part, or, still better,
with transitional Second Part.
* * * * * *
In our illustration of the sonata-allegro form it is necessary, on
account of limited space, to select a very concise example, of unusual
brevity,--Beethoven, sonata, op. 49, No. 1, first movement; the
original may be referred to, for the omitted details:--
The thematic factors are small, but none is omitted; every essential
component is represented.
For a more extended and fully developed example of the sonata-allegro
form, see Beethoven, pianoforte sonata, op. 14, No. 2, first movement;
number the 200 measures, and verify all the details according to the
following analysis (figures in parenthesis refer as usual to the
Principal Theme, Part I, period-form (1-8). Part II (9- ), dissolved
(about 14) into Transition ( -25).
Subordinate Theme, Part I, period, extended (26-36). Part II,
period, probably (37-41-47).
Codetta I, period, extended (48-58).
Codetta II, Small phrase, extended (59-63). Here the Exposition
closes, with the customary double-bar and repetition marks.
Development, Section I (64-73), from Principal theme. Section 2
(74-80), from Subordinate theme. Section 3 (81-98), from Principal
theme. Section 4 (99-107), closely resembling the Principal theme, but
in a remote key. This section practically ends the Development,
inasmuch as it culminates upon the dominant of the original key.
Section 5 (107-115), establishment of the dominant. Section 6
(115-124), the Re-transition. The Recapitulation begins with the
Principal Theme, Part I, period (125-132). Part II, group of
phrases, longer than before (133-152).
Subordinate Theme, as before, but in the principal key (153-174).
Codetta (I), as before, but slightly extended (175-187). The second
codetta is omitted.
Coda, phrase, repeated and extended (188-200).
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