Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition
Next, we find ourselves in a much different scene. Amid teasing and taunting, we hear the calm voice of the nurses who look after the children.
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The harmony slips into Jewish modes, such as the Phrygian dominant scale. As the movement progresses, the two portraits interlock, as if in conversation. One of the most distinctive voices in this movement is a piercing, obsessively-repeating statement in the trumpet.
Baba Yaga is a Russian folktale involving a ferocious, supernatural creature with the face of a deformed woman. Her hut, deep in the woods stands on chicken legs. Hartmann drew a design for a clock based on the hut.
Mussorgsky Pictures at an Exhibition
The second theme intones a Russian Orthodox chant. Our experience of the piece can change dramatically through these other versions.
Thank you for bringing this up, Kathy. I was familiar with the synthesizer arrangement by Isao Tomita, but not the ones you mention. If you want to try it sometime, here it is.
By the way, I really enjoyed reading this and listening to the links you provided. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Notify me of follow-up comments by email.
No omissions or other simplifications have been made to the musical content. Directors are encouraged to use one player per part for the saxophones, trumpets, trombones, euphonium, and tubas.
Of the 11 Hartmann drawings and paintings referenced by Mussorgsky in Pictures at an Exposition, , only six are presently known. While Hartmann's illustrations depict moments frozen in time, Mussorgsky, master composer of opera and song, manages to draw out a miniature story in sound for each one. A short synopsis of the individual movements along with a description of the illustrations appear below.
Mussorgsky’s “Pictures at an Exhibition”: A Showpiece in Multiple Versions
The Bessel score has no metronome markings. The Hartmann illustration that served as inspiration for this movement is described by Stassov as " Russian style of the 14th century, [in] bronze and enamel Petersburg Public Library, serves as a mere starting point for Mussorgsky, whose musical language here has more in common with Stravinsky than that of his contemporaries.
Maestoso con grandezza. To the right is a belfry with a cupola in the shape of a Slavonic helmet. The processional theme that opens this movement is presented in its entirety at three places: first in the unadorned opening statement, with a repetition using fuller harmonies measures 1—29 , then accompanied by carillon-style scales mm.