I will be making a series of posts detailing the form and structure of some Classical/Concert pieces over the next month. One of my favorite pieces is “In a Summer Garden” by Delius.
The score is below with the harmonic devices marked.
This piece starts in a G minor tonality, switching between G minor and F(7). The clarinets catch the 7th.
The opening statement is a four bar phrase played by the woodwinds. Next the strings answer with the exact same melody. However this time we see a slight change in the bassline (C instead of F). This is a C minor chord with a 2 and a 4 (suspensions), however, older rules of resolution are not observed.
So there is the first eight bars of the piece, all in G minor.
The countermelody introduced in measure 6 by the oboe will go on to be the main theme/idea presented throughout much of the piece.
Next up we have a trademark Delius triplet pentatonic sound. This measure of F major sets up the next section which will hover in F major and change time signatures into 4/4.
Orchestration-Doublings between the split Viola and Cello, Violin 2 and Viola, parallel octaves present in the G to F to G part (No problemo) as it adds to the weight of the sound that the i to bVII to i can often convey so well.
Some thoughts and lessons:
Lessons-This shows how you can take a simple melody and pass it off to the various groups of instruments to give it a different sound. It also demonstrates the importance of changing harmonies over the top of a single melody.