Fur Elise

9 September 2016

Music is constantly evolving and forever changing. Throughout the different eras, music has changed immensely and continues to change today. This is because with each new generation of artists and listeners come various new ideas and different tastes. As each era comes and goes, certain composers are recognised more than others. These composers usually harbour immense talent and compose memorable pieces that mirror the very soul of their musical era.

One of the very recognisable names in music still to this day is Beethoven. This essay will analyse one of his most famous pieces, from the romantic era, ‘Fur Elise’. Beethoven was an excellent composer that helped in the laying down of the stepping stones for the romantic era. The romantic era is characterised by chromatic harmonies, discords, contrasts in dynamics and pitch as well as intense expression of emotion, freedom in structure and complex use of tone and rhythm. aphares on December 8, 2010) .

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Fur Elise is a very well-known and popular piece of music. ‘Fur Elise’ was written some time during 1867 and is an excellent example of what the romantic era is all about. Beethoven’s ‘Fur Elise’ displays many characteristics of the romantic era such as chromatic notes, changes in the dynamics as well as freedom in the structure and a very complex use of rhythm. The dynamics change constantly as the piece progresses and as the climax of the piece comes near.

Beethoven’s ‘Fur Elise’ flows very smoothly up and down the piano creating a very relaxed and blissful mood. Fur Elise has three distinct parts all of which appearing in the form of A-B-A-C-A, these parts are also well defined and easily recognizable. The piece begins with a gentle melody that is played freely and smoothly along the arpeggiated chords (section A). Section B of the piece briefly covers the F major scale before returning once again to section A, the melody.

After the melody, section C, or the climax is played which is done so with a very fortissimo-staccato feel. Slurs and chromatic notes are also present helping once again to create a truly marvelous piece of music. ‘Fur Elise’ is played solo and on the piano. ‘Fur Elise’ displays Beethoven’s skills as an artist tremendously. Beethoven has created a piece that truly captivates people and captures their attention for the whole piece. With the piece casually flowing in and out of different keys it’s no wonder everyone loves it.

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