Tchaikovsky’s “The Seasons” complete (Olga Scheps live)
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Olga Scheps playing Tchaikovsky’s cycle “The Seasons / Die Jahreszeiten” Op. 37a live at Stadthalle Germering.
Live recording April 29, 2016.
00:06 – January: At the Fireside (A major) 05:13 – February: Carnival (D major) 08:16 – March: Song of the Lark (G minor) 11:00 – April: Snowdrop (B-flat major) 13:42 – May: Starlit Nights (G major) 18:34 – June: Barcarolle (G minor) 23:34 – July: Song of the Reaper (E-flat major) 25:34 – August: Harvest (B minor) 28:48 – September: The Hunt (G major) 31:50 – October: Autumn Song (D minor) 37:00 – November: Troika (E major) 40:02 – December: Christmas (A-flat major)
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Tchaikovsky’s “The Seasons”
From mid nineteenth Century to early twentieth Century, Russia’s national piano music developed rapidly, with a unique style from the school, only for half a century, it has established an important position in the International Piano World [ In the Russian classical piano music, piano divertimento “four seasons” is a has a important significance of works, it is completed by the end of the 19th century Russia’s most prominent composer Tchaikovsky.
The whole divertimento is composed of twelve pieces for Piano and respectively in December in a year as the background, in the form of solo piano to describe the four seasons in a year, Russia’s unique scenery of mountains and rivers and people in changes in the natural life of labor scene. Tchaikovsky using a variety of music genres of writing, all kinds of ethnic dance, Russian folk songs, hunting song, Barcarolle, genre can be heard in the “four seasons”.
It can be said that this is a gathering of the Russian national flavor of the piano music works. Touching melody, unique minor style, vivid image of the music, and represents the national temperament of poetry with, the “four seasons” become a classical piano music in a shining star, and it also shows the unique charm of Russian folk music to the people.
Piano set “Four Seasons” content
The piano set “Four Seasons” is as its name. Its content is based on the twelve months of the year. It is a solo piano to express the changes of the four seasons. It vividly depicts the unique scenery of the country and the people of Russia. Living in life, it can be said that “Four Seasons” is a true portrayal of the Russian national image in the form of music. “The Four Seasons” consists of twelve piano pieces, each with a unique title that echoes the twelve months of the year.
They are “January-At the Fire Side”; “Carnival” February-Carnival; “Song of the Lark”; “Snow Snow” April-Snow Drop; “Clean Night” May-White Nights; “Song of the Boat” June-Barcarolle; “Song of the Reapers”; “Harvest” August-Harvest; “Song of the Hunt” September-The Hunting; “Song of Autumn” October-Autumn Song; On the carriage “November-Troika; “Christmas” December-Christmas. Twelve piano pieces are based on the life of the Russians.
In each season’s transformation, they are accompanied by people’s mood and living atmosphere. According to the chronological order of seasons, winter, spring and summer promote people to do various activities, from the quiet of winter to the recovery of spring, from the busy summer to the harvest of autumn, all reflect the season one by one.
Bringing people a life, so we can also call “Four Seasons” a “music of life.”The reason why
“Four Seasons” can stand out in the vast river of music is loved by people because of its special way of creation. In the winter of 1875, Tchaikovsky, who had been thirty-five years old, had created a lot of works and won praises from people. Nikola Mattefevich Bernard, publisher of the St. Petersburg music and art magazine Novelist, wrote to Tchaikovsky saying that he had selected 12 contents from the poems of Russian poets.
The poems that match the seasons of each month are published in the monthly magazines, and at the same time, the twelve piano works to be matched with him, he hopes to complete the creation by Tchaikovsky. After receiving this letter, Tchaikovsky was very excited and immediately wrote back that he was willing to accept the job and would do his best to create it. In this way, the songs and poems were published in magazines every month. Until December of 1796, twelve works composed a beautiful long-form piano set, named “Four Seasons.”
“Four Seasons” performance skills and artistic expression
In short, piano performance is a simple structural analysis of a piano work. According to the basic requirements of the work, the author and the chronological background and style of the work are analyzed. There are also many details to be noted in the performance of “Four Seasons”.
In the Four Seasons, in addition to the quiet and euphemistic melody, there is a very strong and cheerful rhythm, most of which is the dense arrangement of the upper and lower chords. In the second “Carnival”, the seventh song “The Song of the Skull”, the eighth “Harvest”, the ninth “Song of Hunting”, you can hear the chord-like chord playing, give people are an expression of emotion that is extremely cheerful and reveals joy.
In the second round of Carnival’s ABAC’s Rondo, the three A-segments are densely arranged chords to show the joyful scenes of singing and dancing in celebrations. In the ninth song “Hunting”, on the basis of the original song genre, Tchaikovsky chose 4/4 beat instead of the original 6/8 beat, making the rhythm feel cheerful and compact. At the same time, the use of double-point octave chords vividly expresses the tense atmosphere of people hunting. In the performance of these works, these magnificent chords require the player’s full power to play with full spirit, and also need some strength control skills.
In order to play the momentum of the top of the sea, the player first needs to turn the fingers, wrists and arms into a whole, with the wrist as a fixed, with the arm directly to the finger, the height of the force is concentrated, and the keyboard is quickly and forcefully hit. It is required to press the keyboard to the end at the moment of touching the key, and after a strong sound, quickly pull out the keyboard and continue to tap the next set of chords in the same way.
One of the most important components of piano performance is the application of the foot pedal. The use of the foot pedal can make the sound of the key strikes smooth and consistent, and the pedal can control and adjust the volume to a certain extent, even changing the brightness of the sound. Therefore, the pedals are used well, which can add color to the performance, and can also express the emotional expression of the player. For the performance of “Four Seasons”, because of its minor characteristics, it is soft, deep and dim.
First of all, it is necessary to accurately represent the contrast of the sounds played by the piano, so the application of the pedals is essential, and the usage should be alternately using the sustain pedal and the soft pedal. In addition, there is a strong sound method for the use of the sustain pedal, which is to highlight the changes in the mood of the music, and it is necessary to perform with great strength. In fact, the acoustic effect of the piano itself is relatively thin, so in order to satisfy this strong musical effect, it is necessary to render a sound effect to be highlighted for a bright and dim contrast on the sound, so the player needs to be in the foot sound.
The use of the tread is very good to enhance the thickness of the sound and the strong contrast. Every kind of music works has the thoughts and emotions to be expressed and the artistic appeal and expressive power. In this respect, “Four
Seasons” has a very special nature. It is not just a piano piece, it is accurate. Four Seasons is a musical product combined with literary works.
We can feel the temperament of a poem from the title of each work. Russia’s most beautiful and beautiful poems and music infiltrate each other. These languages with strong patriotism can not only dominate people’s consciousness, but also subtly dominate people’s life behavior.
Therefore, this melody with poetic temperament can impress the hearts of the people and deeply imprint the feelings of Russia in the minds of every listener.In the fourth song “Song Xuecao”, the poems are written as “light green, fresh pine grass! In the early spring, the snow is squatting beside you. The sadness of the past, only the last few tears are still flowing, coming to Japan. The happiness will bring you novel illusions. The melody of the whole song is deep and quiet, like a crying cry, and it is like singing in a low voice. The picture depicted is a faint wind, and the ice and snow that have not completely melted and the green grass of the newborn sprouts are intertwined with each other.
Just like the people at this time, in the winter and spring, the memories of the past are remembered, and the future is also aspired. Happiness. A good musical piece can not only bring a beautiful melody to the listener, but also bring a kind of philosophical thinking or enlightenment of life outside the melody. In this respect, “Four Seasons” has With its unique expressive power, it not only depicts the landscape of Russia’s mountains and rivers with notes, but also shows people’s attitude towards life in nature.
It can also be said that this is a representative work of the image of the Russian nation. Listening to “Four Seasons”, you can hear the sounds coming from Russia to the distant land. The listening experience in it brings people unlimited imagination and aftertaste. It is the unique artistic charm of “Four Seasons”
Tchaikovsky’s piano suite “The Four Seasons” is one of the most important masterpieces of Russian piano music. This work uses a beautiful and beautiful melody and a musical language like poetry to describe the beautiful scenery of the four seasons, and let us hear the most pristine voice from the Russian nation. Strong national imprints, magnificent mountains and rivers, touching festivals and songs, and a determined attitude towards life are all baptisms that the Four Seasons can give. Tchaikovsky used his wisdom and sweat to create a miracle belonging to Russian national music.
His national music can also be called a model of classical music in the world, and “Four Seasons” will be like vast music. Among the stars, it is the most shining one.
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