b Riding East: February 2007

Friday, February 09, 2007

Schumann Fantasy in C Op 17

I finished a paper on Schumann's Fantasy in C. I'll be performing this piece at my recital, which strangely enough I've scheduled for the afternoon of March 11, forty years after the day of my birth.

I don't think I could have written this paper without having studied the piece in a performance capacity for the past year or so. I also don't think the insight would have been nearly as developed if not for the support of my advisor, Dr. Berger. The book by Nicholas Marston was extremely valuable, as was the biography of Schumann by Daverio.

I intend to record all three movements of the Fantasy over the coming weeks. Ultimately, my interpretation of the piece will be more representative of my views on the work rather than this paper.

Earth's Many Colored Dream: Schumann Fantasy in C Op 17

Briefly, I propose a new model of perceptual analysis to suggest that in fact an intuitive structure and form exists in the first movement.

Chorale #3

I've finished setting the text for Chorale #3 (otherwise known as prelude #4).

I wrote the chorale a year ago after my grandmother Evelyn visited memchu to attend service and hear us sing. We sang All Creatures that morning. To remember this day and her, I came home that afternoon and wrote this piece. Unfortunately she passed away a few months later; my mother played this chorale at her funeral.

While I've written a lot since this time, and my style has evolved to perhaps challenge tonality moreso, I still enjoy the simple pieces. Technically this is my fourth prelude, but my third chorale, so the name is a little misleading.

When I set the text to this piece (and I advise all to start with text not music!), I of course took the original St. Francis text "The Canticle of Brother Sun". I find he emphasizes Lord throughout, not to offend our modern people, but rather to perhaps offset his praise of 'sister earth, moon, brother sun, etc.'.

I couldn't help but think of Vera during the final stanzas, and so decided to expand the dedication to include her.

Modulations and rhythm require some care, but I think the voice leading is largely straightforward.

Greg Wait has offered to have our memorial church choir sing this work in a future performance.

Chorale #3