Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Wenzel Matiegka, Grand Sonata II, 1: incomplete recapitulation featuring the second quarter of Theme 1 and skipping to the transition

Having proposed that Matiegka derived his Theme 1 from his Theme 2, and that his Theme 2 is indebted to Haydn, we can get to the development (which will include the coda from the exposition).
It's very important to note that Matiegka calls for a repeating exposition.  Remember what we discussed earlier in this series about how an incomplete recapitulation may be informed by things like high intra-expositional development, and that when this happens in the context of a repeating exposition we may find "redundant" content sliced out?  That's going to be borne out in this sonata form, too.

The exposition ends robustly in the key of E major and the development starts with a C dominant seventh that takes us into F major for the start of the development process.  The Theme 1 derived material is quickly followed by a development of the Theme 2 material.  This is followed by a call-and-response passage in D minor drawn from the Part 2 material of Theme 1.  Next Matiegka uses the florid sextuplet transitional passage as the basis for continuing the development.  You'll be able to see all this after the break.

Now we'll get to a point in the development where, like he did in his Grand Sonata I, Matiegka introduces a part of his Theme 1 material in a way that causes thematic recapitulation to happen before the opening motto recapitulation occurs.  We get an F sharp minor variant of Theme 2 that leads to a tonic pedal passage.  Matiegka brings back only Phrase 2a/b at this tonic pedal passage.  He doesn't develop that Phrase 2 from Theme 1 until this point and he really expands it to build momentum toward the return of the opening motto.  Matiegka has gotten us to the right key for a recapitulation to happen but he's gotten there sooner than his most recognizable Theme 1 motto.  Not unlike Haydn (if, arguably, with less skill) Matiegka plays a game of divergent expectations.  We're given a tonal resolution in the appropriate key but too soon and there's a little suspense as to when, exactly, that opening motto will return.

When the opening motto returns at measure 144 we finally get what we would expect from a recapitulation, that opening motto comes back loud and clear.  But it shows up in its transitional form.  It's as though Matiegka treated Phrase 2a from Theme 1 and the motto from Phrase 1 in  the transition as a synecdoche for the entire Theme 1.   He proceeds with a transition that, with a few modifications, is basically the material from the exposition recalibrated into A major.  We move along to Theme 2 .. but first ... let's look at the music we've been talking about.

NOW we'll get along to Theme 2 ...

At this point we've seen that there are so many gestural links between Theme 1 and Theme 2 that it helps to explain why Matiegka seemed to feel so little obligation to give us a "real" recapitulation.  He was developing the same set of ideas from Theme 2 so steadily throughout the sonata (and, we may guess, was so confident that people would hear that he was riffing on Haydn's work and in a way that showed off how a single thematic group could inspire the entire first movement) he didn't feel a need to do more than signal that the ideas "came back" in the recapitulation in a shorthand form.  While that could be construed as weak sonata writing by the standards of theorists from the Romantic era, it's not necessarily "bad" composing.  If anything, given Matiegka's obvious debt to Haydn, that level of playfulness and joking around would be what we could expect.  Matiegka's sonta forms might not be as profound as Sor's in emotional content but I would propose he was Sor's equal in terms of a capacity for thematic development, even if he may not have matched Sor's penchant for original themes. 

This is just the first sonata form in Grand Sonata II.  Matiegka's second movement is a slow sonata form.  We'll get to that movement presently.

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