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Thread: Problem with Beethoven 3rd symphony, one of the fugues of the last movement...

  1. #1
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    Aug 2013
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    Default Problem with Beethoven 3rd symphony, one of the fugues of the last movement...

    I'm actually studying and analyzing this wonderful work (Beethoven's Eb symphony) and i have a theory cuestion about the first short fugue that appears in the last movement, just after the exposition of the theme.

    Is it a four-voice or a five,six,seven-voice fugue? The exposition has five entrances, however the last one is made by the first violins which had actually entered in the first place. Then, there's the problem with the woodwinds. How are we supposed to consider them? Their playing is (most of the times) not so relevant as the strings voices, but they definitely play totally different things compared to the strings. Extra voices? They also don't make usual entrances with subject and so.

    Maybe i'm trying to analyse all that needlessly, but i'm curious what someone else have to say about this.

    Bye! and enjoy music

  2. #2
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    Hey, if the 1st violins have entered but then enter again that does not mean there is an extra voice in a fugue. It may be the start of a new rotation of the voices, or it may be leading to an episode. It sounds like they come again at the end of the fugue exposition (I would go look but it is late and I am tired!) so I would expect you are into the episodic section of the fugue. You should find voice entries with model sequence technic in-between! As far as the woodwinds go, three things you could consider, is it a double fugue (i.e.. are they carrying an independent theme that has its own parallel exposition)? Are they playing a countersubject? (Does it comeback consistently to accompany the theme?) Are they just providing contrapuntal support without following a strict repetitious scheme?

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