1. Ives’s Love for Beethoven

2. In this thesis, I will examine and explore Charles Ives’s fascination and use of Beethoven. Specifically, I will analyze his Concord Sonatas, in which Beethoven’s Fifth is quite prominent. From ideas to beliefs of transcendentalism to sheer love for the first four note, Ives’s love for Beethoven will be revealed.

3. Sources thus far:

Schwartz, Steve. “‘Concord’ Sonatas.” 1996. ClassicalNet. http://www.classical.net/~music/recs/reviews/r/rgy87078a.php

Examines each movement, analyzing the use of Beethoven’s first four notes in each. In addition, he provides a background to each movement, going into detail of how the stories behind the piece fit in with the music and themes.

Swafford, Jan. “This Great American Composer.” 2009.  http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/music_box/2009/06/this_american_composer.html

This explore’s Ives’s history and what lead him to become the exuberant composer he was. Giving insight into what molded his musical mind, the article also analyses his works, including the use of Beethoven in the Concord Sonatas.

Block, Geoffrey Holden, and J. Peter Burkholder. Charles Ives and the Classical Tradition. New Haven: Yale UP, 1996. Print.

This book about Ives goes into detail about Ives and his music. Spending many pages on the use of the first four notes, Block explores the idea behind it and how everything musically fit together.

Denk, Jeremy. “Flight of the Concord.” The New Yorker, February 6, 2012.

Schiff, David. “The Many Faces of Ives.” The Atlantic, January 1, 1997.

4. Charles Ives was an American composer, transcendentalist, and insurance salesman. Working a steady job, he had the financial stability to form a creative outlet through composing music that was, as some consider, too early for his time, if at all ever. His most famous work, the Concord Sonatas, contain an extensive quoting of Beethoven’s Fifth symphony’s first four notes. Ives’s relationship with Beethoven is clearly a great fandom,  as the Fifth shapes his sonatas. Although Ive’s may have used the first four notes as a dedication to the great composer, there is evidence that points to a deeper meaning beneath the surface including beliefs and musical themes.

One thought on “

  1. Good, Hattie! These are outstanding sources. You’ve chosen a fine topic and you’re going to get a lot out of this, I think.

    For you, for Wednesday, since you have some serious texts and a lot of information to acquire, simply spend 2 hours reading and taking notes, and respond before Wednesday’s class to information that you have gleaned that will be useful for your work.

    Your opening paragraph needs some work. Sentence two, the ending “if at all ever,” is not a good construction, so that can be finessed. “Fandom” is definitly not a word to appear in a serious piece of music writing. We are moving from blogging or from journalism to academic prose now. Final sentence “Deeper meaning beneath the surface” is redundant, so you don’t need beneath the surface. “Beliefs and musical themes” don’t quite relate to the previous sentence.

    This will be a good opportunity to work on your writing. I think you are a very intelligent and perceptive person. Your writing needs to do a better job reflecting that, as it’s an essential aspect of our ability to communicate with the world. We’ll work on it.

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