2024 Student Research Conference:
37th Annual Student Research Conference

French Nouveau Composition: Ravel's String Quartet Movement I
Conner R. Gallagher*, Micaela S. Merrill, Tucker C. Maxwell, and Evan L. O'Day
Dr. Brian X. Kubin, Faculty Mentor

Ravel's String Quartet in F major, composed in 1903, was an attempt to win France's Grand Prix de Rome: a competition for French artists established in the 17th century. Ravel did not win the prize, and he would never write another string quartet; however, this piece has become a standard feature in the repertory. Ravel displays reserved passion and technical prowess, and the themes in the first movement featured today are reiterated throughout the entire work. In this part, he uses nouveau harmonic devices and motifs starting in D minor--notably the pentatonic--theme of the exposition played by violin I and viola, and the octatonic scale which is heard at the outset of the piece in the cello part. This movement is in standard sonata form, and the development builds to a frenetic climax before the recapitulation of the main theme modulates to F major.

Keywords: Maurice Ravel, French impressionism, Composition, string quartet, music


Presentation Type: Performance Art

Session: 301-1
Location: SUB Alumni Room
Time: 12:45

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