Forum
View Cart
Use Facebook login
LOGOUT  Welcome
 

Work

Frédéric François Chopin

Frédéric François Chopin Composer

3 Nocturnes, Op.9 (includes the famous 'Nocturne in Eb')

Performances: 218
Tracks: 326
Loading...
Musicology:
  • 3 Nocturnes, Op.9 (includes the famous 'Nocturne in Eb')
    Key: Eb
    Year: 1832
    Genre: Nocturne
    Pr. Instrument: Piano
    • No.1 in Bb-
    • No.2 in Eb
    • No.3 in B
The 21 nocturnes of Fryderyk Chopin (of which only 20 were designated as such by the composer, the well-known Nocturne in C sharp minor of 1830 being in fact a pastiche of pre-existing music that only received the title nocturne upon publication in 1875) span virtually his entire creative career. Chopin inherited the form from Irish composer John Field; Field's influence is indeed palpable throughout Chopin's earliest published entries in the genre, the Three Nocturnes, Op. 9 (dedicated to the famous pianist Mme. Camille Pleyel, with whom several noted musicians of the day, including Berlioz and Liszt, fell in love), although even at this early stage in his development Chopin's melancholy-tinged chromaticism and sinewy melodies stand in stark contrast to the Irish composer's far simpler pieces.

The Nocturne in B flat minor, Op. 9, No. 1, is actually not Chopin's earliest work in the form: the E minor Nocturne published posthumously as Op. 72, No. 1, was composed in 1827, some three full years earlier. Nevertheless, it is with this elegiac, somewhat neglected B flat minor piece that Europe got its first real glimpse into Chopin's wondrous, rapidly-maturing musical mind. Chopin adapts Field's ternary (ABA) design to suit his more strophic organization, and it is thus also possible to hear the B flat minor Nocturne as a musical utterance in four, rather than three, distinct groups. The restrained melancholy of the opening passes through to a longer, melodically sultry middle section, only to return once again, inevitably, to the point of departure. Chopin expands the coda, once merely a kind of musical appendage, into a full-fledged partner in the musical drama. The final repose on the tonic major implies a deep sadness far beyond the expressive power of a more glaring minor mode ending.

The Nocturne in E flat major, Op. 9, No. 2, is very possibly the most famous work ever penned by the composer. In spite of the many tasteless renditions to which it has been subjected over the years (a great many of them on disc, and by performers of some stature), it remains a work of great charm. Of the three pieces in Opus 9, this is the one most heavily indebted to John Field, both in terms of its direct phrase structure and its generally rather simple atmosphere. Cast in the kind of two-part song formula beloved of nineteenth century salon musicians, Op. 9, No. 2, is one of the briefest of the nocturnes. There is little space indeed for sloppy sentimentality, even within the striking little cadenza that concludes the work.

Although it has remained in the shadow of its more famous companions, many feel that the Nocturne in B flat major, Op. 9, No. 3, is the finest of the group. Of the three, it most clearly outlines the language and dramatic ABA pattern of the more mature nocturnes, though it, like its companions, remains markedly Fieldian. Nowhere in his music is Chopin's great affinity for the human voice more apparent—both the aria-like ornamentation and gentle melodic sweep of the opening passage present a great challenge to the performer's powers of subtlety. The middle section is more agitated, indeed, almost march-like. Chopin begins the important coda with an abrupt and somewhat startling shift of harmony, while the final cadenza is of even greater range than that of the preceding nocturne.

© All Music Guide

No.1 in Bb-

The twenty-one Nocturnes of Fryderyk Chopin (of which only twenty were designated as such by the composer, the well-known Nocturne in C-sharp minor of 1830 being in fact a pastiche of pre-existing music that only received the title Nocturne upon publication in 1875) span virtually his entire creative career. Chopin inherited the form from Irish composer John Field; Field's influence is indeed palpable throughout Chopin's earliest published entries in the genre. The Three Nocturnes, Op.9 (dedicated to the famous pianist Mme. Camille Pleyel, with whom several noted musicians of the day, including Berlioz and Liszt, fell in love) still betray their stylistic debt to Field, although even at this early stage in his development Chopin's melancholy-tinged chromaticism and sinewy melodies stand in stark contrast to the Irish composer's far simpler pieces. The Nocturne in B-flat minor, Op.9, No.1 is actually not Chopin's earliest work in the form: the E Minor Nocturne published posthumously as Op.72, No.1 was composed in 1827, some three full years earlier. Nevertheless, it is with this elegiac, somewhat neglected B-flat minor piece that Europe got its first real glimpse into Chopin's wondrous, rapidly-maturing musical mind. Chopin adapts Field's ternary (ABA) design to suit his more strophic organization, and it is thus also possible to hear the B-flat minor Nocturne as a musical utterance in four, rather than three, distinct groups. We pass from the restrained melancholy of the opening through a longer, melodically sultry middle section, only to return once again, inevitably, to the point of departure. Chopin expands the coda, once merely a kind of musical appendage, into a full-fledged partner in the musical drama. The final repose on the tonic major implies a deep sadness far beyond the expressive power of a more glaring minor mode ending.



© All Music Guide

No.2 in Eb

The twenty-one Nocturnes of Frédéric Chopin (of which only twenty were designated as such by the composer, the well-known Nocturne in C sharp minor of 1830 having been assigned the title Nocturne only upon publication in 1875) span virtually his entire creative career. Chopin inherited the form from Irish composer John Field; Field's influence is indeed palpable throughout Chopin's earliest published entries in the genre. The Three Nocturnes, Op.9 (dedicated to the famous pianist Mme. Camille Pleyel, with whom several noted musicians of the day, including Berlioz and Liszt, fell in love) still betray their stylistic debt to Field, although even at this early stage in his development Chopin's melancholic chromaticism and sinewy melodies stand in stark contrast to the Irish composer's far simpler pieces.

The Nocturne in E-flat major, Op.9, No.2 is very possibly the most famous work ever penned by Chopin. In spite of the many tasteless renditions to which it has been subjected over the years (a great many of them on disc, and by performers of some stature), it remains a work of great charm. Of the three pieces in Opus 9, this is the one most heavily indebted to John Field, both in terms of its direct phrase structure and its rather simple atmosphere. Cast in the kind of two-part song formula beloved of nineteenth-century salon musicians, Op.9, No.2 is one of the briefest of the Nocturnes. There is little space indeed for sloppy sentimentality, even within the striking little cadenza that concludes the work.

© Blair Johnston, Rovi

No.3 in B

The twenty-one Nocturnes of Fryderyk Chopin (of which only twenty were designated as such by the composer, the well-known Nocturne in C-sharp minor of 1830 being in fact a pastiche of pre-existing music that only received the title Nocturne upon publication in 1875) span virtually his entire creative career. Chopin inherited the form from Irish composer John Field; Field's influence is indeed palpable throughout Chopin's earliest published entries in the genre. The Three Nocturnes, Op.9 (dedicated to the famous pianist Mme. Camille Pleyel, with whom several noted musicians of the day, including Berlioz and Liszt, fell in love) still betray their stylistic debt to Field, although even at this early stage in his development Chopin's melancholy-tinged chromaticism and sinewy melodies stand in stark contrast to the Irish composer's far simpler pieces. Although it has remained in the shadow of its more famous companions, many feel that the Nocturne in B-flat major, Op.9, No.3 is the finest of the group. Of the three, it most clearly outlines the language and dramatic ABA pattern of the more mature Nocturnes, though it, like its companions, remains markedly Fieldian. Nowhere in his music is Chopin's great affinity for the human voice more apparent-both the aria-like ornamentation and gentle melodic sweep of the opening passage present a great challenge to the performer's powers of subtlety. The middle section is more agitated, indeed, almost march-like. Chopin begins the important coda with an abrupt and somewhat startling shift of harmony, while the final cadenza is of even greater range than that of the preceding Nocturne.



© All Music Guide
Portions of Content Provided by All Music Guide.
© 2008 All Media Guide, LLC. All Music Guide is a registered trademark of All Media Guide, LLC.
AMG
Select a performer for this work
Loading...
 
© 1994-2014 Classical Archives LLC — The Ultimate Classical Music Destination ™