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Z. Alieva

Dotted strokes in the Violin Sonatas by R. Schumann: towards the problem of performing reading

The author of the article highlights topical issues related to the performing embodiment of R. Schumann’s ensemble instrumental compositions in modern concert and pedagogical practice. Particular attention is paid to the “triad” of Sonatas for violin and piano to be created during 1851–1853 and actually summed up the artistic evolution of the composer in this genre. It is noted that Schumann’s chamber ensemble style is characterized by a compound interweaving of the “old” and “new” – the traditions of baroque and classical instrumentalism (primarily clavier art), interacting with artistic strivings of the romantic era. The specificity of the mentioned interactions is highlighted by the author of the article on example of the violin stroke technique used in Schumann’s “duet” Sonatas. A significant specimen is a group of dotted strokes actively used by the composer and characterized by pronounced variability in sound and graphic (notational) aspects. In particular, such aspects of analytical consideration as applied to the named strokes can be differentiated, such as relative “continuity” and “discreteness” (due to the insertion of “intermediate” pause in a dotted figure), “staccato” and “legato” of sound conducting, iambic and trochaic articulation, “monorhythmic” and “poly-rhythmic” ensemble context (which prompts the choice of one or another approach to performing “coordination” of a specific figure with other elements of a many-parts facture). The features of interaction between the pointed variants, as well as performing realization of the latter, are analytically elucidated in the article using examples from Schumann’s Violin Sonatas. For this purpose, fragments of the 2nd movement (Allegretto) from the Sonata in A moll op. 105, Scherzo (the 2nd movement) and finale (the 4th movement) from the Grand Sonata in D moll op. 121 are enlisted.

Key words

R. Schumann, chamber ensemble work, Sonatas for violin and piano, violin stroke technique, dotted strokes.

For citation

Alieva Z. Dotted strokes in the Violin Sonatas by R. Schumann: towards the problem of performing reading // South-Russian Musical Anthology. 2022. No. 4. Pp. 133-139.