"Prelude to Act III" (WWV 96) for Piano Duet

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Uploaded on Nov 12, 2012

Richard Wagner (1813–1883) was largely self taught in music. The Meistersingers from Nuremburg, completed in 1867, was his only comedic opera, but this is not evident in the “Prelude to Act III.”

Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (The Mastersingers of Nuremberg) is an opera in three acts, written and composed by Richard Wagner. It is among the longest operas still commonly performed today, usually taking around four and a half hours.

Most of Wagner’s major works had extended gestation periods, and Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (The Mastersingers of Nuremburg) was no exception. He began thinking about it in 1845 as a comic companion for the just premiered Tannhäuser, another opera about a singing contest. But other projects – Lohengrin, the Ring cycle, Tristan und Isolde – intervened and Die Meistersinger had to wait over 20 years before it reached the stage. A visit to a museum in Venice in 1861 revived Wagner’s interest in the 16th-century world of the mastersingers, and he completed the libretto the following year. He premiered some of the music at the end of 1862, but did not finish the score until 1867. The full work was finally – and triumphantly – staged in Munich in 1868, with Hans von Bülow conducting.

A generally mellow and optimistic work, Die Meistersinger is also quite serious about its central issue of musical innovation versus conservative tradition. With the help of the mastersinger Hans Sachs, the young knight Walther wins the singing contest and gets the girl. Both Walther and Sachs were based on historical models, and the work had enormous appeal to burgeoning pan-Germanic sensibilities. The brilliantly jubilant Prelude to Act III, another example of Wagner’s deft hand with a brass melody blazing through a whirl of strings, introduces the wedding of Lohengrin and Elsa (and is followed in the opera by the famous bridal march).

Although originally written for Orchestra, I created this short arrangement for Piano Duet (2 Piano's 4 Hands) from the powerful theme using the orchestral cues and for extra coloration and It is best played using the "GeneralUser GS.sf2" Soundfont by S. Christian Collins Software (http://www.schristiancollins.com/generaluser.php).

Classical

Pages 4
Duration 02:13
Measures 66
Key signature 2 flats
Parts 2
Part names
Privacy Everyone can see this score
License None (All rights reserved)
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