Show off your theory chops with my weekly challenge! You’ll find a new question here every Monday. Please comment to post your reply.
This week’s challenge:
Listen to these two themes from the first movement of Dvorak’s Piano Quartet in Eb Major, Op. 87. They’re both built from the same musical idea. What is it, and what’s been done to it between Theme A and Theme B?
Reply to post your answer, and check back on Friday, August 27th to see if you’re right!
ANSWER for 8/23/21
The first four notes of Theme A are a motive, a short musical building block. This one drops down a sixth, then rises two seconds. The motive reappears in Theme B, starting on the fourth note, but it’s been inverted, flipped upside-down. So the motive has been reinterpreted and used to generate new music, an economical method of composing typical of Dvorak and his contemporary, Brahms.
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