Kraftig und Feurig Op. 7 No. 3

Kraftig und Feurig Op. 7 No. 3


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Kraftig und Feurig

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Mendelssohn composed the seven pieces that comprise his Op. 7 pieces separately between 1824 and 1826, publishing them individually before they came together to form a complete collection. They are divided into two types – pieces in older forms (of which this is one), and pieces in more modern, sonata-type forms. Op. 7 No. 3 is a traditional four voice fugue, but with the flair and harmonic language of the Romantic era. The opening theme is dramatic and easily identifiable, with its three repeated notes followed by a florid semiquaver passage. These two elements of the theme are then passed from part to part and through various keys in the middle section. Sometimes notes cascade down from the top part right through the texture, only to be answered by arpeggios that bubble up from the depths. An entry of the fugue subject over a tension-building dominant pedal signals the start of the recapitulation, with the semiquaver passage under an inverted pedal in the highest part bringing the piece to a triumphant close.

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Robert Rainford

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