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sion of Johannes Brahms, who, for some reason or other, persistently refused to allow it to be published, or to go out of his hands. It is now published and will be used at this concert”* (December 29, 1900).
The first movement, Allegro molto, in G minor, 4-4, begins immediately with the exposition of the first theme; the melody is sung by the first and second violins in octaves over a simple accompaniment in the other strings. The theme is sixteen measures long and ends on the dominant. The orchestra concludes it in four measures, and the first eight measures of the theme are repeated by the strings with sustained harmonies in oboes and bassoons. There is a modulation to B-flat major. The subsidiary theme is of an energetic character. The second theme is in B-flat major and of a plaintive nature. The first part is repeated. The free fantasia begins with the first theme, now in the remote key of F-sharp minor, and this theme now has various appearances. The development is long and elaborate. Especially noteworthy is the combination of the beginning of the first motive with the second half of the subsidiary theme, which is now played legato by the wood-wind; also the preparation for the repetition with the surprising entrance of the first theme; also the treatment of the first theme in imitation at the end.
The second movement is an Andante, E-flat major, 6-8, and it is also in the sonata form. Reimann is reminded by the mood of this movement of a sentence in a letter written by Mozart to his father in 1787, a year before the composition of the symphony: “As death, rightly considered, is the true purpose of our life, I have since a year or two made myself so thoroughly acquainted with this true and best friend of man that his picture no longer frightens me; it brings much that is reassuring and comforting.” The chief theme is hardly a continuous melodic song. It begins in the violas with a rhythmic figure, which is imitated by the second violins, then by the first. The true melody lies somewhat hidden in the basses, and in the repetition of
* By some means Mr. Theodore Thomas succeeded in procuring a copy of the Nachschrift, perhaps before it came into Brahms's possession. At all events, he has used it exhaustively at his concerts in this country for the last twenty or twenty-five year3.-W. F. A.
t An anecdote is told of one of Liszt's concerts in Munich, in the days when he still appeared in public as a pianist. He had just played his own matchless transcription of Beethoven's Pastoral Symphony as only he could play it. It should be remembered that the Pastoral, though homely enough in its thematic material and generally simple in its development and working-out, is, as a piece of orchestration, one of Beethoven's most complicated scores; it thus presents quite peculiar difficulties to the pianoforte transcriber, difficulties which Liszt has conquered in a way that can only be called marvellous. After Liszt had played it at the concert in question, Franz Lachner stepped up to him in the green room and said: “You are a perfect magician! Think of playing literally everything in the second movement and with only ten fingers! But I can tell you one thing even you can't play with all your magicianship.” “What's that?” asked Liszt. “The first sixteen measures of Mozart's little G minor Symphony, simple as they are." Liszt thought a moment, and then said with a laugh: “I think you are right; I should need a third hand. I should need both my hands for the accompaniment alone, with that viola-figure in it!”-W. F. A.
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the first eight measures is sung elegiacally by the first violins. Some find reminiscences of passages in Tamino's "Picture" aria, “Ich fühl es,” in “The Magic Flute,” and in Ilia's aria, “Se il padre perdei,” in "Idomeneo.” The second theme is in B-flat major, and it consists chiefly of passage-work, in which “the little fluttering figure” of the accompaniment of the concluding period of the first theme assumes thematic importance. The free fantasia is short. Energetic modulations in chromatic ascension lead to a half-cadence, when the first rhythmic motive appears in the bassoons, accompanied by sighs of wood-wind instruments and figuration in the strings. This leads to the repetition.
The third movement, Menuetto: Allegro in G minor, 3-4, is stern and contrapuntal. The trio, in G major, is light and simple.
The Finale: Allegro assai, in G minor, 4-4, begins in an earnest, almost passionate mood, which is maintained to the entrance of a cantabile second theme in B-flat major, sung first by the strings, then by the wood-wind. In the repetition of this theme there is a characteristic and melancholy variation in the first violins. The free fantasia is an elaborate development of the first theme in imitative counterpoint. The third part is practically a repetition of the first, although the second theme is in G minor, not, as might be expected, in G major.
Commentators have pointed out the fact that the first seven notes of the scherzo theme in Beethoven's Fifth Symphony are identical with the corresponding notes of the first theme of this finale, save that the key is different; but the rhythm is so different that detection of any similarity is not easy for the ear.
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