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Returning CyclesContexts for the Interpretation of Schubert's Impromptus and Last Sonatas$
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Charles Fisk

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780520225640

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520225640.001.0001

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The Wanderer's Tracks

The Wanderer's Tracks

(p.60) Chapter 3 The Wanderer's Tracks
Returning Cycles

Joseph Kerman

University of California Press

The “Wanderer” Fantasy sets itself apart from most of Schubert's instrumental music not only because of its unusual form and virtuosic character, but also because of the place it occupies in his compositional career. At the time of its composition, late in 1822, Schubert had not completed a large-scale instrumental piece in three years. He turned to it, as already mentioned, from his work on the “Unfinished” Symphony, which he had brought closer to completion than any other instrumental work in several movements since the “Trout” Quintet and the Piano Sonata in A Major, D. 664, of 1819. In the intervening three years, Schubert had occupied himself primarily with dramatic music, but without much public success. This chapter suggests that the “Wanderer” Fantasy, in the way it dramatizes the emergence of its C♯-minor song yet also integrates it into its C-major surroundings, provides a model for cyclic tonal organization. It also offers, through the song, a key to its interpretation.

Keywords:   Wander Fantasy, Schubert, instrumental music, tonal organization

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