Friday, February 1, 2008

Mendelssohn's Prel.and Fugue Op.35, No.1 and Rondo Capriccioso Op.14

Mendelssohn wrote six Preludes and Fugues, Op.35. Obviously, he followed Bach’s path. The Op.35, No.1 in E minor, generally considered the best of the set. In prelude, a kind of etude figuring a melody framed by arpeggios in both hands. The dramatic, Bachian Fugue, where the subject is heard in original form and in inversion, follows, becoming increasingly agitated, climaxing, and ending with a powerful chorale over a moving bass. The piece sounds overwrite to me. There are too many extra notes, and sounds unnecessary for the music.

Mendelssohn’s Rondo Capriccioso in E-minor, Op.14, is freely constructed in two parts: a Weber-like andate leads to a brilliant staccato presto in 6/8. The piece as a whole is fresh sounding. It is a very good recital piece for intermediate students.

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