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Elements of Sonata Theory$
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James Hepokoski and Warren Darcy

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195146400

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195146400.001.0001

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Sonata Form as a Whole

Foundational Considerations

Chapter:
(p.14) Chapter Two Sonata Form as a Whole
Source:
Elements of Sonata Theory
Author(s):

James Hepokoski

Warren Darcy

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195146400.003.0002

Sonata form is the most important large structure of individual movements from the “common-practice” tonal era, but the term “sonata form” was almost surely unknown to Haydn, Mozart, and early Beethoven because it seems to have surfaced only in the 1820s and 1830s. Sonata form seems to have been a familiar term by the mid-1820s, at least in A. B. Marx's Berliner allgemeine musikalische Zeitung circle, where it referred both to the multimovement cycle as a whole and to the form of individual movement. In 1838 and 1845, Marx put the stamp of approval on the term “Sonaten-form” with regard to the individual-movement structure. Haydn's conception of what was customary within sonata form in 1770 differed somewhat from Beethoven's conception in 1805, but they shared certain crucial genre-defining features.

Keywords:   sonata form, Sonaten-form, common practice, tonal era, structure, movements

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