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Concerto for piano and orchestra
2nd movement: Passacaglia
(ternary form)

form scheme
2nd movement
Passacaglia is a Spanish folk-dance, which came to Italy and France in the 16th century, together with the guitar music, and there it became a dance of the court and the stage. The Passacaglia is an important variation-based form of instrumental music in the 17th and 18th centuries. The variations are built on a constantly recurring bass melody of 8 bars.

bars 1-9
In Schiske’s piano concerto the theme in slow triple measure comprises 3 bars with 9 quarter notes which are introduced by the soloist. Above them a contrasting theme begins to develop, which assumes rhythmic density.

bars 10-19
The theme remains the same, but the eighth movement turns into triplets and on the resumption of the theme into a sixteenth movement.

bars 19-25
The orchestra, behaving as a listener so far, takes up the theme in the celli and double bass, the soloist weaving around it in powerful chords.

bars 26-33
In a lively bridging passage the strings and horns introduce a triplet motive, which is taken up by the soloist, immediately passed on to the orchestra and carried on by the soloist. A musically playful element predominates.

bars 45-53
The centrepiece introduces a new theme presented by the orchestra in espressivo legato.

bars 54-64
The unfolding of the centrepiece theme begins with the same starting notes, but leads the melody into new musical spheres.

bars 114-122
In part A* the passacaglia theme is played by the trumpets in majestic threefold fortissimo.

bars 123-131
From the orchestra the soloist takes over the theme in powerful chord beats.

bars 168-177
In the Coda the theme of the passacaglia is contrasted with the theme of the centrepiece. Both are sounded simultaneously by the orchestra in reduced volume.

bars 177-188
The soloist closes the the 2nd movement with the passacaglia theme played in a kind of canon.

Turn over to 3rd movement   

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