Sunday, September 15, 2013

Another Beethoven moderato!

Having come to the conclusion that the Variations on Rule Britannia had to be based on rhythmic modulation rather than on the more conventional technique of maintaining a steady duple beat from 2/4 into 6/8, I was astounded to observe the marking at the beginning:

"Tempo moderato"

That must be what the word implies in this context!  The way I play the piece is to maintain a steady eighth note between the theme and the mysterious first variation, going from there via sheer musical logic through the ensuing meters, moods, figures, and drama, finding convincing metric relationships but not leaning on an abstract beat to tie the work together.