Classical Music Exposition Analysis Quiz

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15 Questions

What is the main motif in the first subject made up of?

3 quavers and one crotchet

What creates tension in the transition section?

Diminished 7th chord

What is the characteristic of the horn call in the second subject?

Monophonic and an altered version of original motif

How is tension built in the development section?

Rising chromatic scale

What hints at modulation to F minor in the development section?

V pedal occasionally moves to Db

Which chord is used to create tension in the transition section?

Diminished 7th chord

What is the characteristic of the horn call in the second subject?

Monophonic

How is tension built in the transition section?

Chromatic bass line in bass and cello

What hints at modulation to F minor in the development section?

V pedal occasionally moves to Db

In the first subject, what begins forte, then becomes piano as only strings play, with imitation?

Main theme

Describe the characteristics of the main theme in the exposition of the piece.

The main theme is made up of a 4-note motif, begins with ambiguity in harmony, starts with strings and woodwind playing in octaves, begins forte and becomes piano as only strings play, and features imitation, imperfect cadence, and a Ge+6th chord to create tension.

How is tension built in the transition section of the piece?

Tension is built in the transition section through the use of dissonant chords, imitation between strings and woodwind to build a dominant 7th chord, and a chromatic bass line in the bass and cello, along with an ascending sequence played by strings and woodwind, and the modulation to the relative major and the use of tonic and dominant pedals.

What are the characteristics of the second subject in the exposition?

The second subject features a monophonic horn call that is an altered version of the original motif, contrasted by a flowing, conjunct legato string and woodwind melody, with added layers of instruments and chromaticism in the melody to build tension, leading to a tutti and a dominant 7th chord.

How is the main motif developed in the development section?

The main motif begins a third higher and is played by horns, undergoes modulation, imitation between strings and woodwind, a stepwise version played by strings and woodwind, a rising chromatic scale, and mostly imitative polyphony, with violas and cellos rising chromatically to bring the key back to C minor.

What happens in the development section before the full motif returns?

In the development section, the harmonized notes of the motif are exchanged between wind and strings and shortened until only a D major chord is heard before the full motif returns.

Test your knowledge of classical music by analyzing the structure and elements of a musical exposition. Identify motifs, tonal ambiguity, instrumentation, dynamics, and harmonic tension in the main theme and transition section.

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