Domenico Scarlatti Composer
Sonata in D-, K.517, L.266Performances: 11
Musicology:As many of his admirers know, Scarlatti was an original, even revolutionary, composer. His compositions, which include many unique stylistic features, exhibit sophisticated formal designs and elaborate thematic developments. Interestingly, Scarlatti rarely used the Alberti bass, a popular keyboard figuration of his time. In this Sonata in D minor, however, he did, and quite imaginatively, making it serve the dual function of melodic and harmonic adjunct. Blistering and urgent in character, the music breathlessly races from beginning to end. Marked Prestissimo, it opens with a descending run interrupted by slight upward turns. As it repeats itself, this hurried statement leads to a series of five (sometimes four) emphatic chords that punctuate each run. Midway through, Scarlatti develops the material, the opening run turning contrapuntal and the emphatic chords appearing with some hesitation. Nevertheless, the busy, almost manic, mood of the music endures, and the notes drive forward with a sense of fateful determination until the end. This sonata typically has a duration of just over three minutes.
Sonata in D-, K.517, L.266Key: D-
Pr. Instrument: Harpsichord
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