String Quintet No. 2 in B Minor: IV. Finale: Allegro con brio

Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
5 minutes
Modern classical music
String quintet
Instrumental parts
Not available

Note: Parts available upon request.

Commentary by Left Brain and Right Brain. RB: "The Finale is d?j? vu all over again because it plagiarizes the Introduction in D Minor from the first movement. But straightaway it veers into D Major for some unearthly reason." LB: "No new themes appear in the Finale; its 4 sections recall themes from the previous 3 movements. The 1st section Allegro con brio grows into quadruple counterpoint, and the key rises by a 5th as each theme is added. D Major (2 sharps): Mvt. II, Theme II; A Major (3 sharps): Mvt. II, Theme I; E Major (4 sharps): Mvt. I, Theme I; B Major (5 sharps): Mvt. III, Anthem." RB: "That's a creepy way to creep up to B Major, and we stay in 5 sharps from then on. Then the 2nd section Allegro moderato is a jazzy pizzicato fugue which juggles Mvt. III, Anthem as the Subject and Mvt. II, Theme II as the Countersubject. Can we have fun or what?" LB: "Thus far the Finale has been in duple meter, but the 3rd section Allegretto is in 2 forms of triple meter. A valse triste in G-Sharp Minor recalls Mvt. I, Theme II in 6/4 time but it is repeatedly interrupted by Mvt. III, Intermezzo in 6/8 time. Polymeters are unusual in my music." RB: "Then we're in the home stretch in the 4th section Allegro con brio. Glowing renditions of Mvt. III, Anthem and Mvt. II, Theme II – over and under tremolos, and even a couple of arpeggios – make a pretty neat coda." LB: "After nearly a year of sporadic work on this string quintet, the Finale was completed in June 2004 in Springfield, Missouri."

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