I completed a waltz yesterday. I have been told a lot of things like these. My thoughts about it will be under the quotes.
Your waltz is too repetitive to be a good waltz
Any dance form in existence relies on repetition. Not just whole section repetition either.
Your form is weak
Are they suggesting that I have my waltz in Sonata Form because of its length? That's like unheard of.
It sounds modal because there is no section in the dominant key, just dominant 7ths following the subtonic chord. And the subdominant is not enough to confirm the tonality.
I thought the dominant 7ths after the subtonic chords were enough to confirm the tonality.
Change the left hand. Almost constant root position bass(spare the 1st inversion dominant 7ths) isn't the best harmonically speaking
Yeah, okay, I might need some first inversion and second inversion chords. But how will I know where to put first inversion and second inversion chords? If I don't know where to put the first and second inversion chords, then I might get too many inversions and not enough in root position.
Use that going down by step that the Fate Motif does to your advantage.
So you're suggesting that instead of repeating the Fate Motif, that I continue to transpose it down a step? I guess that makes a more interesting melodic contour. But what about in the second to last entry of it where it is a single pitch twice and then in octaves? I would have this if I continued transposing the Fate Motif down a step:
G, Eb, F, D, Eb, C, D, Bb, C, Ab, Bb, G
And whoops, it collides with my bass. And the harmony has to change if for nothing else than that the last 2 pairs of notes(which would be in octaves) outline Ab major and G minor respectively instead of C minor and Bb major like the other 4 pairs of notes. And I suppose that gives a more interesting contour to my bass but the Gm to Cm motion is weak dominant function. That doesn't really go well with a fortissimo passage, does it? If I treated it as an Eb to Cm motion instead, it weakens my tonality.
Your waltz is too simplistic for its length
So what, your suggesting I go from the simple melody I have to a melody that is Chopin level difficult? How is that going to fit with the Beethovenian vibe to the waltz?
The chord under the Bb in bar 9 shouldn't be Bb major
I don't understand. I clearly outline a Bb major triad in bars 9-11. So clearly, Bb major must be the harmony there. And besides, the Bb to G7 motion is very smooth. Part of this has to do with the fact that I use an incomplete 7th chord(B, D, and F, but no G). Granted, you could also say that I use a diminished triad but vii° in root position(which is rare in classical music) is often said to be an incomplete V7, especially in a classical music context.
Harmonize your non-chord tones properly! That Eb in bar 10 is not harmonized properly
How is it not harmonized properly if it is a passing tone between D and F, which are chord tones of Bb major? Next you're going to say that the C in bar 9 isn't harmonized properly either.
Maybe instead of going to F minor from your Eb major, you should go to Gm
That would mean another mediant relationship, which on its own isn't bad. But the reason that I go to F minor partly has to do with the diminished 7th passage and also has to do with the fact that the Gm to Cm motion is arguably a weaker dominant than a plagal motion from Fm to Cm.
Around bar 174, I suggest that you make it more consonant and end your waltz with a Picardy Third
How often does Beethoven end with a Picardy Third outside of his symphonies? Rarely if at all, right? And it isn't like a Picardy Third is the norm these days unlike how it was in Bach's time right? So why end my waltz with a Picardy Third?
It doesn't sound like the waltz wants to end yet because of the 2 bar long C minor chord leading to another chord. Maybe this means that you should extend the waltz.
Um, doesn't the ritardando and quiet dynamic give enough of a sense that the piece is over that the fact that the chords are sustained for a long time doesn't change that?
Anyway, here is the link to my waltz. What do you think of my waltz? It is the first waltz that I have completed and my second attempt at writing a waltz.