Lang Recital Hall: Concert Analysis

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Imagine sitting down to a multiple-course meal where the main dish is a strong fish, followed by a palate cleanser before a very sweet dessert. Now imagine a meal where the main course is savory, as well as the dessert. Both of these meals flow well, despite the first having contrasting flavors, while the second has complimentary flavors. Musical passages act in the same way—some flow into each other seamlessly, while others roughly transition from one piece to the next. Both can be effective in capturing the audience’s attention, and in drawing a myriad of emotions out of them. One concert I attended was Steven Graff’s piano recital on Thursday April 21st, 2016, taking place in the Lang Recital Hall on the fourth floor of Hunter College. Upon…show more content…
In stark contrast, the B and C sections were much darker and developmental. These sections were also played forte, as compared to the A section being played at piano. The tempo varied between each section, but not by much; all sections were played at Moderato. However, Graff also used tempo rubato frequently throughout this piece, and most others as well. The melody was consistently on the treble clef, with arpeggios and chords in the bass. Arabeske was in duple meter, and clearly from the Romantic period, given away by a hauntingly simplistic, yet unforgettable…show more content…
As a result, the faces of audience members were rather somber and soft, reflecting that they felt the emotion Schumann intended to release in Arabeske. This piece is played today, because it still easily draws emotion that changes the mood of the entire hall. Even though Arabeske was composed in C Major, the mood it set was not characteristic of such a key. Graff may have placed this piece first to elicit an emotional response from the audience, or to begin to tell a story through the order of the pieces in the recital.

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