“Tempest” & “Moonlight” Sonata’s: a Coupled Analysis Essay

731 Words May 6th, 2013 3 Pages
Classic Composers: Ludwig van Beethoven

“Tempest” & “Moonlight” Sonata’s: A Coupled Analysis

Beethoven’s “Tempest” and “Moonlight” sonatas are by themselves sublime pieces to any ear, each encapsulating within their notes such a build up of extreme human emotion, until their 3rd movements wherein which the pressure becomes to much to contain, ultimately resulting in a climax of genuine sentiment. When one interprets the final movements of both sonatas in such a way that the similarities as well as the differences between the two can be acknowledged, one then cannot only better understand the reasons those same movements are able to exemplify such striking affects, but also why the emotion that is instituted by them is
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Through the frantic energy and disjointed rhythms, one can connect a sense of unrequited love, which began to formulate within the 1st movement, and has now erupted into feelings of grudging acceptance, and emotional despair. The rest of the movement, through its various up’s and down’s, illustrate the continued pursuit of reaching this unknown destination and the struggle to be liberated from ongoing affliction. Finally, following an emotional climax in which it would seem the sought after goal was briefly reached, the melody quickly spirals downwards, farther below than where it started even, and it is then conveyed that this struggle is one of perpetual force, its conflict unconquerable.
In Beethoven’s “Tempest”, although it does share qualities with “moonlight” such as its fast, rondo-sonata form, the variance in repeated sequence of chord, and the presence of a very fluid emotional scheme which ends in climax, the emotion that is revealed is very different from that of “moonlights”. The affect I find most suitable to the 3rd movement of the “tempest” is an emergence from a swirling waltz, from which exudes a feeling of great optimistic happiness. The formulation of rising hopefulness that has accrued since the 1st movement is seen here, where it is involved in an epic battle through which it struggles to obtain a climax of unbridled spirit and positivity. After much effort, the desired outcome is reached,
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