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G大調第一小提琴奏鳴曲 Violin Sonata No. 1, Op 78, Brahms

G大調第一小提琴奏鳴曲 Sonata for Piano and Violin in G Major Op. 78 (1879)  (Rain Sonata)

  1. 活潑但不過分 Vivace ma non troppo (G major)
  2. 慢板 – 彪行板 – 慢板 Adagio – piu Andante – Adagio (E♭ major)
  3. 快板中庸 Allegro molto moderato (G minor – G major)

布拉姆斯 Johannes Brahms (1833-1897)

這首奏鳴曲全曲運用勃拉姆斯第59號作品集第三首曲目“雨中曲”和第四首曲目“回音”作為其靈感來源,因此這首奏鳴曲也以《雨之奏鳴曲》被人所熟知。這首曲目的特殊之處在於其內容與作曲家的個人經歷緊密相關。眾所周知,布拉姆斯是克拉拉·舒曼的狂熱推崇者,當在創作第二樂章時,舒曼的兒子(同時也是勃拉姆斯的教子)費利克斯正處於結核病的晚期。在一封寫給克拉拉·舒曼的信中包含了柔板的24個開放的小節:

「致克拉拉,(這首樂曲)將要向你訴說… 我是多麼深切地想念你和費利克斯…我非常渴望得到關於費利克斯的消息…還是費利克斯不允許更深遠地考慮這些呢?」

在他寄給克拉拉·舒曼的24小節之後,緊接著的是像葬禮進行曲似的第二樂章的中間部分。費利克斯可能會在他寄出信後的幾天死去,這個片段正是布拉姆斯悼念舒伯特的方式。最後的樂章直到1879年的夏天才完成,其主題直接摘自雨中曲。同時,雨中曲的開頭部分「那些夢喚醒了我,那些我在童年做過的夢”」強烈地暗示了布拉姆斯對費利克斯死去的悼念。

整首奏鳴曲運用來自雨中曲的圓點主題。由於其教子的逝去,這首奏鳴曲的絕大多數部分都蘊含著一種被壓抑的悲傷。用G大調演奏的第一樂章是相當鼓舞人心的,偶爾會有一陣陣年輕的躁動。正如之前所提到的,第二樂章受到費利克斯逝去的強烈影響,其中間部分是各種各樣的葬禮進行曲。第三樂章以小調開始,但以大調結束,和雨中曲的結尾部分相呼應:「當太陽重新照耀,草地將會變得更加綠」。克拉拉·舒曼清楚地感知到了他的好朋友勃拉姆斯的想法,於是在對第三樂章的回復中寫道:「我不敢相信有任何人能像我一樣感受到這曲調中的愉悅和悲傷。」

 

Also known as the Rain Sonata, this sonata uses the theme and motivic material from Brahms’ Op. 59 No. 3 “Regenlied” (Rain Song) and No. 4 “Nachklang” (Echo) throughout.  What’s special about this piece is the deep personal stories associated with the composer. As is widely known, Brahms was an ardent admirer of Clara Schumann, and while working on the 2nd movement, Felix Schumann, Clara’s son and Brahms’ godson, was terminally ill from tuberculosis. In a letter to Clara Schumann containing the opening 24 measures of the Adagio:

“Dear Clara, [this music] will say to you … how affectionately I think of you and Felix… I am so eager to hear from Felix… or does Felix not allow further thought about this?”

The funeral-march-like middle section (piu Andante) of the 2nd movement, which immediately succeeds the 24 measures he sent to Clara Schumann, was likely Brahms’ way of grieving over Felix Schumann, who would die only days after Brahms sent out his letter.  The final movement, the main theme of which is copied directly from Regenlied, was not finished until summer of 1879, and the opening lines from the Regenlied, “Awaken again in me those dreams, That I dreamt in childhood” strongly suggest Brahms’ mourning of Felix’s death.

The entire sonata uses the dotted motif from Regenlied.  There is a subdued sadness in much of the music due to his godson’s passing away.  The 1st movement, casted in G major, is relatively cheerful, with the occasion bout of youthful agitation. The 2nd movement, as mentioned earlier, is heavily influenced by Felix’s death, with the middle section being a funeral march of sorts. The 3rd movement starts out in a minor key, but finishes in major—fitting for the hopeful closing line in Regenlied: “When the sun again shines, the grass will be twice as green”.  Clara Schumann, clearly perceptive of what her dear friend Brahms had conceived, wrote in response to the 3rd movement: “I cannot believe that anyone could find this melody so delightful and full of melancholy as I”.

© 2016  Macau Classical Music Society

 

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