AQA A2 Chamber music from Mendelssohn to Debussy (2015)
AoS3b, Chamber Music from Mendelssohn to Debussy, is one of the three options of Section C: Historical Study of the Unit 4 – Music in Context question paper. In the past, AQA examination questions have typically asked students to compare aspects of two works or movements in detail, or comment on stylistic features of the music’s period, drawing examples from works they have studied. Therefore it is essential for students to be able to refer to examples from specific works.
This article will look at three movements from key chamber music composers from the Romantic period (Mendelssohn, Brahms and Ravel). Each of the three movements has been broken down into the elements of structure, melody, harmony/tonality, instrumental writing and texture, through which the general features of the period can be explored.
The three works covered in this article are as follows, for which scores and recordings will be required:
- Mendelssohn: String Quartet No. 5 in E flat, Op. 44/3, first movement
- Brahms: Clarinet Trio in A minor, Op. 114, first movement
- Ravel, String Quartet in F, second movement