Tchaikovsky - Nocturne Op. 19, No. 4 for Cello and Piano (original key: C# minor)
  • Tchaikovsky - Nocturne Op. 19, No. 4 for Cello and Piano (original key: C# minor)
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The famous cello-piano version of this Nocturne was arranged by Fitzenhagen, changing the key from C# minor to D minor (making it brighter), as well as adding dynamics and articulations not found in Tchaikovsky's original piano piece. Tchaikovsky took Fitzenhagen's arrangement and orchestrated it. As a thought experiment, I decided to make my own arrangement for cello and piano, but using as much of Tchaikovsky's original content as possible. C# minor is a melancholy key, which captures the spirit of the piece better than D minor. On the whole, the piece is much quieter. The climax of the middle section is marked "piano," and not "forte" as is commonly performed. Tchaikovsky's cadenza is much shorter. Fitzenhagen's cadenza contains typical gestures inspired by Liszt and other romantic "virtuosos." The listener will also note syncopated triplets in the closing gestures.

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