Praeludium and Allegro

October 13, 2016 at 05:43 AM · Hey guys:)

I'm a student preparing for my Certificate of Performance exam in November (AAAAHHH) and one of my pieces is Praeludium and Allegro. I'm struggling to find relevant general knowledge information. Does anyone have any tips for general knowledge and how much I need to know?

Greatly appreciated, thanks.

Replies (6)

October 13, 2016 at 06:58 AM · Well, Kreisler wrote this and many other original works that he attributed to other composers (like Pugnani) that he included on concert programs, with the explanation that he did not want to have his name repeated endlessly.

This piece in particular, the music critic for the NYT, Olin Downes, was trying to find out information about because he was covering Yehudi Menuhin's wartime performances for Allied troops and called the publisher for details. They in turn told him to talk to Kreisler directly, who then confessed authorship of the work (and a number of others) in question. They engaged in a back-and-forth letter writing duel in the Times, to the great entertainment and amusement of the populace that followed the drama. History gives Kreisler the positive nod on this one, and his original compositions "in the style of" other composers are now played by nearly everyone.

There's a wonderful book on Kreisler, "Fritz Kreisler: Love's Sorrow, Love's Joy" by Amy Biancolli. It's where I got this information, and it's a fascinating read, well worth the purchase. Lots of used copies everywhere!

October 13, 2016 at 01:49 PM · You're a student learning this piece and you can't figure out what key it's in?

If that were bad enough, I just Googled "how to tell what key a piece of music is in" and immediately got an explanation.

Why is it that, with so many resources available on the internet, so many students, including graduate students, want information handed to them on a platter without any effort?

October 14, 2016 at 03:17 PM · There is plenty on Google. Have you looked up Kreisler (or indeed Pugnani) in the Grove Dictionary?

Those are always a starting point for when and why was it written and for whom, and ditto when it was first performed.

Then you need to look at your own knowledge of Kreisler and his work: Is the Praeludium and Allegro similar at all to his other work for solo violin? What are the characteristics of his work - this piece and his music generally? There might not be books about this, but you can work it out by playing other pieces by him.

And finally you need to apply some of your knowledge of music theory. What structure is it in? Why is the Prelude paired with the Allegro? What is the tonality and how does it connect to the mood of the piece? To what key does it modulate - is that a standard harmonic structure?

Good luck! :)

October 22, 2016 at 05:47 AM · Thank you very much:)

October 22, 2016 at 04:21 PM · I have a copy of Josef Gingold's personal edits of the piece, if that is of interest.

October 22, 2016 at 05:22 PM · Scott, I'm a little puzzled by your last post: I can't see anything that says that Ping Qu cannot figure out the key the piece is in.

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