Perspective 1.2 - The Romantic Era

Assignment 1.2 - The Romantic Era

Czech nationalist composer Bedřich Smetana wrote "Má vlast" (meaning: My Homeland) in around 1875. It is a collection of six symphonic poems that depicts different aspects of the countryside around Prague in the Czech Republic. The second movement "Vltava", also known by its German name "Die Moldau" (The Moldau), was written to celebrate the river that flows around Prague. He wanted to paint an image of the river in the minds of the listener with his programmatic music. He also wanted to share his style of Czech folk music and used this as his main theme. Listen to the excerpt below and be prepared to discuss how Smetana used instrumentation to create the image of the river.

Click to listen

In a paragraph or two, describe how Smetana used instrumentation to create the image of the river. Be specific and tell why and how these instruments convey each image and feeling.

Describe the introduction, the main theme (starts at 1:08), and the B theme (starts at 3:15).