Composed between 1830 and 1833, Frédéric Chopin’s three Op. 15 Nocturnes for solo piano are haunting, dreamy, and intimate songs of the night time. They unfold as bel canto arias with out phrases, through which the piano turns into a singing voice.
Chopin’s 21 Nocturnes popularized and expanded a type which was developed a era earlier by the Irish pianist and composer, John Subject (1782-1837). They function daring harmonic improvements which influenced later composers. Within the phrases of the German musicologist, Hugo Leichtentritt (1874-1951), Chopin’s Nocturnes juxtapose “an idyll of sounds, shiny, delicate and nice, illumined by the solar, with a tempest that erupts all of a sudden with violence and brute power.” Franz Liszt wrote, “Chopin, in his poetic Nocturnes, sang not solely the harmonies that are the supply of our most ineffable delights, however likewise the stressed, agitating bewilderment to which they typically give rise.”
The mercurial high quality of this music could be heard within the Nocturne in F Main, Op. 15, No. 1. It begins with an Andante cantabile (singing) which is marked, semplice I tranquillo (merely and tranquilly). A tempestuous center part, marked Con fuoco (with fireplace), arrives with out warning. Quickly, the dreamy magic of the opening returns. Its looking out melody floats above constantly shifting harmonies.
The Nocturne in F-sharp Main, Op. 15, No. 2 is a wordless bel canto aria with shimmering ornamentation. Chopin’s up to date, the German pianist, Theodor Kullak, noticed that “the return of the heavenly opening theme…touches [one] like a benediction.”
A efficiency of Shakespeare’s Hamlet is alleged to have impressed the haunting Nocturne in G minor, Op. 15, No. 3. For the composer, the music conjured up pictures of a graveyard. It begins with halting fragments. The ultimate chorale-like chords, marked Religioso, result in a glimpse of daylight.
“It’s very interior music and really deep,” mentioned the pianist, Maria João Pires. “Chopin is the deep poet of music. However he additionally invented this horrible factor referred to as piano recitals. That made me endure all my life.” Listed below are Pires’ celebrated 1996 recordings of Chopin’s Op. 15 Nocturnes:
Nocturne No. 4 in F Main, Op. 15, No. 1:
Nocturne No. 5 in F-Sharp Main, Op. 15, No. 2:
Nocturne No. 6 in G Minor, Op. 15, No. 3:
- Chopin: Nocturnes, Op. 15, Maria João Pires Amazon
Featured Picture: “Panorama at Sundown” (1879), Zygmunt Sidorowicz