The gloomy undercurrents of Schubert’s Moments Musicaux

The first three movements of Schubert’s Moments Musicaux are three different “snapshots” of rustic life, in its charm, pride, and wide emotional range. That rustic character is still present in the last three movements, which constitute the second “volume” of the work. However, many differences arise when comparing the first three movements with the last three. The […]

Beethoven’s “Tarnhelm” variation

We have seen how Grieg formed an entire harmonic vernacular for a short piece of music, Klokkeklang (Bells), and how a performance of this piece might be informed by these peculiar characteristics. Here I examine how Beethoven does something not dissimilar in his 20th Diabelli variation. The many differences between Klokkeklang and the Diabelli Variations need not be elaborated […]