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Bach's Cycle, Mozart's ArrowAn Essay on the Origins of Musical Modernity$
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Karol Berger

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780520250918

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520250918.001.0001

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Mozart at Play

Mozart at Play

(p.179) 4 Mozart at Play
Bach's Cycle, Mozart's Arrow

Karol Berger

University of California Press

This chapter starts with Mozart's instrumental music. At some point between the early and late eighteenth century, between Bach and Mozart, musical form became primarily temporal, and the center of attention for musicians shifted toward the temporal disposition of events. The discussion demonstrates this point by considering the temporality of the instrumental genre that was of central importance to Mozart, the concerto allegro. Among Mozart's instrumental genres, the concerto stands out for its profusion of melodic invention. In these concerto allegros, the main focus of interest is the order in which melodic ideas are presented within each of the three tellings of the story—opening ritornello, exposition, and recapitulation—making each of the tellings progressively more complete and logical.

Keywords:   instrumental music, Bach, Mozart, concerto allegro, melodic invention

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