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Flute Sonata in Eb "Haydn Sonata"


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I'm not finished writing this sonata yet, but I have finished the exposition of the first movement. As you can probably tell by its nickname, the inspiration to write this sonata was Franz Joseph Haydn. This is my first sonata for a duet that actually has a finished exposition. I finished the exposition of the sonata in an hour. I know Haydn is humorous, so I tried to be humorous with my sonata. There are a quite a few surprises in the exposition that I wrote. Here they are:

Bar 5: Sudden entry of the flute and absence of the piano
Bar 6: Sudden reentry of the piano
Bar 10: Short diminuendo, like the theme isn't quite done yet
Bar 11: Short staccato variant of the theme over a syncopated bass
Bar 14: Sudden forte cadence, theme is now finished
Bar 15: Piano dynamic in transition material right after a cadence at forte, sudden absence of the flute
Bar 21: Forte dynamic when transition material is taken up an octave, flute comes back
Bar 26: Piano dynamic yet again, descending trill motive
Bar 41: Very busy texture as the repeat comes closer
Bar 47: Sudden change in texture, sudden dynamic change as it repeats

I'm wondering, is my sonata exposition Haydnesque in its nature? I tried to get a Haydnesque feel to it by being more humorous than serious with the music. Anything impossible for the flutist? Does it feel like a Molto Allegro to you(tempo is at quarter note = 140 BPM)? Or should I just take the Molto off and just have Allegro as my tempo marking? The audio ends at about 2:51 in the MP3. I am working on the development section right now.

Flute Sonata in Eb.mp3

Flute Sonata in Eb.pdf

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I think it works as a whole in terms of sounding like Haydn. Because when I think of Haydn I think, Bow and Curtsy dum dum dum. All the cadences tied up in a nice little bow. Congrats! You've done all that.  However, the counterpoint could use some work. It's unclear because the scalar sequences don't have proper tonic-dominant grounding in their "journeys." Only vague hints. I felt that you might be trying to avoid the necessaries in order to sound modern, and were braking counterpoint rules to do so. Stravinsky it's not. In fact you may be working against yourself by not doing enough of the basics here, because the style is very circumscribed and you're kind of stuck with it for now.

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I'm not a very experienced composer, and am also working on one of my first sonatas (for oboe and piano), so take my toughts with a pinch of salt. 

First of all: the flute isn't able to play loudly at it's lower register. I'm unsure at what exact point it starts to become unusable, but some moments (m34, m 42) use the flute's lower register quite a lot. In m 34 it even asks for a crescendo, so I'd say that this part wouldn't sound as you would imagine. One way or another, that doesn't mean that you cant use the it's low register, just keep in mind that it will be very low in volume. May be useful for acompanimental lines, etc. I'd say that the safest register to use is from C5 and up. Also be careful not to get too high up, or it will become unberable to listen to, as it's too high for our ears.

As you said that your being inspired by Haydn, I'd also like to check upon the scalar, repetitive passages. Instead of going up and down the scale, you could introduce a few non-diatonic notes, maybe quickly tonicise on another closely-related key, and go back to Eb. That would catch the listener's attention for a moment, and if you manage it well it may sound very Haydn-esque. (I had an example in mind, but I couldn't find it.)

The last thing I'd say is that the motive that starts on m6 on the flute could (in my oppinion) be improved by adding a 16th note at the end of the scale run. As it is right now, it sounds a little like it was cut short.

One way or another, it does sound pleasing to me. I'm looking forward to see how it turns out!

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