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Chopin: The Four Ballades

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Overview

Chopin's four ballades are widely regarded as being among the most significant extended works for solo piano of the nineteenth century. In a wide-ranging and illuminating discussion, Jim Samson combines history and analysis to provide the reader with a comprehensive picture of these popular piano works.

He begins by investigating the social and musical background to Chopin's unique style. He describes the manuscript sources and evaluates the many subsequent printed editions, then considers the critical reception of the ballades and the differing interpretations of well-known nineteenth- and twentieth-century pianists.

The final two chapters examine the music of all four works analytically. There is a clearly presented formal synopsis of each ballade in turn, followed by a discussion of the works collectively which explores Chopin's own conception of the title 'ballade' and how it may be understood as a musical genre.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521386159
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/1992
  • Series: Cambridge Music Handbooks Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 116
  • Sales rank: 1,461,626
  • Product dimensions: 5.43 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.28 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgements
1 Background 1
Social history 1
Stylistic history 5
Ballade No. 1 7
Ballades Nos. 2-4 14
2 Genesis and reception 20
Sources 20
Editions 26
Critics 33
Pianists 38
3 Form and design 45
Ballade No. 1, Op. 23 45
Ballade No. 2, Op. 38 51
Ballade No. 3, Op. 47 56
Ballade No. 4, Op. 52 62
4 Genre 69
Theories 69
Cycles 72
Structures 76
Narratives 81
Notes 88
Select bibliography 98
Index 101
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