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Franz Joseph Land follows the outline of the first movement of the keyboard Sonata E flat major by Franz Joseph Haydn (KH XVI, 49). Both the themes of Sonata and its auxiliary elements, such as accompaniment, conjunctive passages, etc., were utilized in the new piece. I strictly follow the formal structure of Haydn's Sonata, although all its sections are extended and undergo significant transformation – sometimes faint and in other cases quite radical. The initial tempo Allegro is kept without alterations till the very end of the piece, and the whole work is a single movement (developing) variation composed in a sonata form. The mood range of the music is quite wide and stretches from vital optimism to dramatic tension and tragedy. Similar to this, the piece contains the wide spectrum of styles that range from classical tonality through more complicated harmony till harsh dissonant combinations, atonality and sonoric multilayered texture. The symphonic idioms that are typical of Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Mahler, Shostakovich among others, form a stylistic "chain" with Haydn at the origin of it. Although stylistic components of the piece have been borrowed from different epochs, schools and aesthetics, the transitions between them are always smooth, and often they are deeply integrated into each other. I never oppose my "commentary" to Haydn's music. On the contrary, I aim at finding the points of contact between different styles and cultures, which might be a sign of a new stylistic synthesis.
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© 2011 by Alexander Shchetynsky