Three Intermezzi for piano, Op. 117 (Brahms)
The Three Intermezzi for piano, Op. 117, are compositions that Johannes Brahms created for solo piano. Brahms' Intermezzi were described by the critic Eduard Hanslick as "monologues"... pieces of a "thoroughly personal and subjective character" striking a "pensive, graceful, dreamy, resigned, and elegiac note."
The Intermezzi of Opus 117 were composed in 1892, and they are three in number:
The first intermezzo, in E-flat Major, is prefaced in the score by two lines from an old Scottish ballad, Lady Anne Bothwell's Lament, The lines are:
"Balow, my babe, lie still and sleep!
It grieves me sore to see thee weep."
The middle section of the second Intermezzo (B-flat Minor) seems to Brahms’ biographer Walter Niemann to portray a "man as he stands with the bleak, gusty autumn wind eddying round him."
The third Intermezzo (C-sharp Minor) has an autumnal quality also, suggesting the cold wind sighing through the trees as leaves are falling.
- Walter Gieseking. Schumann Brahms. Columbia Masterworks (ML 4540), 1952.
- Three Intermezzi for piano, Op. 117: Scores at the International Music Score Library Project (IMSLP)
- Detailed Listening Guide using the recording by Martin Jones
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