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Debussy - Violin Sonata

Joshua Iyer

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Published: February 2, 2014 at 6:24 PM [UTC]

Today, after running through audition music (they moved it back to this Thursday because of a couple of 'cold days'... will this winter ever end? The groundhog has probably determined that!), I played through Debussy's Violin Sonata to begin practicing for the sight-reading portion of the audition, which I didn't prepare for last year so much. I've also played three Debussy pieces on piano ("Claire de Lune", "La Fille aux Cheveux de Lin", and am now learning "Deux Arabesques"), so I kind of knew his style - full of vibrant, rich colors and very, very Impressionistic. My piano teacher once told me she pictures his music as the ocean waves, coming to and fro. (So yesterday, I wrote a piano sonata myself called "The Waterfall in the Forest" that has a very Debussy-esque style, in my opinion, and this helped me to work on Ebonique's Theme this morning, which maybe now hints at Debussy's style a bit.)

But I am getting off-topic, because when I played the piece on violin, not only did I have to generally interpret some of the tempo markings (Like 'Appassionato' or 'Fanntasque et l├ęger), but there were a lot of crazy time changes and the like. Like 'Claire de Lune', the piece overall had an almost free-time about it. Being a violin sonata, the violinist only backed by piano, it seems fitting he should be able to move the tempo as he chooses. But the colors and various changes of tone and mood throughout the piece, with crazy accidentals always throwing me off but leading somewhere, and the different articulations and bowings to interpret (not to mention all the 8vas... ugh)... This was a lot of fun to play, and added so much interpretation, it would make a fun piece for Solo and Ensemble, for next year... Maybe. Anyways, just wanted to get that out there. So much French! :)

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