Prokofiev’s Symphony No. 1, often known as the “Classical Symphony,” is a pleasant work that it’s best to know – and that you’ll take pleasure in listening to. Because it was first carried out on April 18, 1918 in Saint Petersburg with Prokofiev conducting, the work has remained an viewers favourite, and with good cause.
Prokofiev known as it “Classical” as a result of he modeled it on the symphonies of Haydn and Mozart. Like lots of the symphonies by these earlier composers, it encompasses a nicely delineated sonata construction within the first motion, contrasting use of the totally different orchestral sections, and an effervescent temper.
What to hear for . . .
There are 4 actions, identical to you can find in most symphonies by Mozart or Haydn. They’re:
1 – Allegro con brio (that means “quick with spirit”)
2 – Larghetto (“pretty gradual”)
3 – Gavotte, non troppo allegro (“gavotte, not too quick”)
4 – Finale, molto vivace (“finale, very energetic and quick”)
Let’s Dig into the First Motion
Like the primary actions of just about all of the symphonies of Mozart and Haydn, the primary motion of the “Classical” is in sonata kind. Which means that there’s:
An Exposition (two themes are launched, one after one other)
Within the first minute (comply with the counter to 60 seconds) of the motion, Theme One is performed twice. You’ll be able to hear that taking place, clear as may be.
Then one minute into the motion (60 seconds on the counter), Theme Two is launched. It, like Theme One, is performed twice, which occurs throughout the second minute of the motion (comply with the counter to the two:00 minute marker level). Theme Two is form of jaunty – it’s simple to identify as a result of it feels totally different from Theme One.
A Growth (the composer mixes the 2 themes collectively in imaginative methods)
At two minutes into the motion (examine the counter), the event part begins. Because of this Theme One and Theme Two get combined up, work together, and grow to be one thing new. It’s simple to listen to this taking place, as a result of issues change into harmonically extra complicated than they had been within the exposition, and a bit extra rhythmically sophisticated too.
The Recapitulation (the 2 themes are performed once more, however have modified)
Hey, they’ve developed so that they should be totally different now, proper? This last part begins at about three minutes into the motion. The 2 themes reappear in numerous methods for the rest of the motion. You’ll be able to inform they aren’t growing any extra, they’re simply restated. However they’ve been modified and are actually extra complicated harmonically. And the recapitulation continues for the remainder of the motion.
A Little Historic Context
Beethoven used the identical sonata kind within the first motion of his symphonies and concertos, in his piano sonatas too and in quite a lot of different works that embrace string quartets, violin sonatas, and extra. The shape was additionally utilized by composers from Brahms to Mahler.
Yup, the primary actions of the 4 Brahms symphonies are in sonata kind, although you need to keep alert to discern the place the structural divisions are. The identical may be stated for the Mahler symphonies; in them, it’s best to discern the sonata kind in Symphony No. 4, which is Mahler’s sparest, most classically impressed symphony.
When you are ready to take heed to all these works on Classical Archives, listening to Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony is an effective way to get your ears working – and to take pleasure in a beguiling work of music on the similar time.
Get pleasure from!