Sonata Rondo Analysis

793 Words 4 Pages
A unique feature of playing a piano piece is that it, in a sense, transports an orchestra into a single performer’s own two hands; Mozart was able to do just that as a major classical composer. While Mozart’s music across the board demonstrated a mastery of all sorts of musical types, his piano sonatas capture distinct character paired with enunciated form in such a way that is very specific to his style. Mozart’s Piano Sonata No. 9 in D major is one of 18 piano sonatas in total, all of which were written in his adult years. Sonata No. 9 of K. 311 is presumed to have been written in 1777 and contains some quite distinguishable characteristics that categorize this piece in sonata-rondo form. In this essay, I plan to make clear why Sonata No. 9 is a sonata-rondo, as well as individually analyzing each section, the themes they contain, and ideas that connect it all, in order to better understand this piece as a performer and musical admirer. As previously stated, this movement of Sonata No. 9 is in sonata rondo form. Section A recurs 4 times (mm. 1-26, 86-94, 175-190, and 249-266), and following traditional form is in the tonic, D major. Each time A …show more content…
9 in D major is crucial to understanding and identifying the piece as sonata-rondo form and not simply rondo form; rather than being contained by a single key and theme, it is heavily modulatory and does not seem to have a general theme. Rather, it is absolutely the development section of the piece as a whole. While C beings in B minor, the vi of D major, it modulates to E minor, D major, G major, and A major, all within 53 measures (mm. 119-172). I might add that if someone only looked at the beginning of C, the piece could be mistaken as rondo form, as it is traditional for C to take place in the minor submediant. Following C there is a retransition into A, which is simply a cadenza to lead from the strong half cadence fermata presented at the end of C to the recapitulation of

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