Dvorak – Symphony 8 Sequence 1

This sequence is based on the opening theme from the first movement of Dvorak’s 8th Symphony.

Background

This piece was written in 1889 and premiered in 1890. Dvorak strived to make it different from his previous symphonies by drawing more heavily on Bohemian folk music and working through his musical ideas in a different way.

Dvorak famously conducted a performance of this piece on “Bohemian Day” at Chicago’s World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893. The same event that introduced the Ferriss Wheel and Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer.

Sequence

Although the 8th symphony is in G major, this theme is in G minor and is used as a sort of introduction to three key moments of the first movement (exposition, development, and recapitulation). The theme acts as a sort of sign post that reads “important music incoming!”

This sequence is taken from the third time this tune appears, as the trumpets introduce the recapitulation.

Strive for a bright, joyous sound with crisp articulations to add definition to the long, lyrical phrases. Add life to your phrasing by creating direction through the repeated notes and make the final note a heroic climax.

This theme appears at 0:45, 4:42, and 7:36.

Have any questions? Comment below, or leave a comment on Youtube, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter.

I chose the recording above as a tribute to the great Maestro Mariss Jansons. RIP

Happy Practicing!

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