Many Faces in F Sharp Minor
In the magical and wonderful world of music, every step brings new experiences, unique emotions. Despite the apparent insignificance of the distance to the next piano key (semitone) - this is the smallest step of music, this interval is very significant, if we talk about the harmonic component.
You can draw a parallel with a photograph: one step to the side brings with it a change in angle, and the subject appears at times in a completely different, hitherto unseen light.
And since sound waves and light are the driving force of photography, from the point of view of physics (and it is well known to argue with exact sciences), these are phenomena of the same order and often subject to the same laws, which means a change in indicators can cause a similar effect.
The wisdom of the classics
This circumstance, as a rule, is neglected by pop songwriters, whose creations can be transposed to any key, at the request of the performer. Using our image system, we can liken such a composer to a photographer who does not care if the frame is underexposed or overexposed, because he also shoots the same landscape.
Classical composers, and after them the whole academic school, were well aware of the above circumstance, especially since there were scientists in the field of physics and chemistry among them. Classics very scrupulously approached the question of choosing the tonality of their works. The tonality was often included by them in the name itself, which means it could not be changed at all by the whim of one or another capricious performer.
And such outstanding figures of musical art as Scriabin, Rimsky-Korsakov, being endowed with the so-called “color ear”, perceived every key as a specific color range.
The phenomenon of color hearing is explained by the existence of the psychological phenomenon "synesthesia", denoting the process of the involuntary response of one type of receptor to the stimulation of another.
Alexander Nikolaevich Scriabin used the term “color tone” to refer to the color range inherent in a particular musical tonality. It is interesting that the word "tone", which is the root of the lexeme "tonality", is also used in visual arts and photography.
In addition to color associations, Scriabin endowed the tonality with such epithets as "spiritual" tonalities, such as, for example, F-sharp-minor-minor, F-sharp-dur major and "earthly, material", including C major, F-major and others.
Colors, in turn, for Scriabin, were symbols of the fundamental components of the universe. So, red in this system is associated with the "color of hell", violet and blue - denote the spiritual component of being. On the basis of this unique world view, Scriabin wrote the symphonic poem "Prometheus". In addition to the symphony orchestra instruments, the light part was included in the score of this work. At the premiere of "Prometheus" in 1910 for the first time in history, light-music equipment was used. This event anticipated the widespread use of such equipment during concerts today, as well as all sorts of laser shows.
However, Scriabin was deeply mistaken, arguing that the color-sound perception of all owners of such a hearing is no different from each other.
Many composers had an individual vision of sounds and tonalities, sometimes radically different from Scriabin's ideas.
A bit of theory
In this article, we will consider only one key — F-sharp-minor — and compare the ideas about this key with different composers.
To begin with, we present a small theoretical background of the tonality itself. It has the Latin designation fis-moll. In the tonality of F-sharp minor signs at the key - sharps of fa, do and salt. Random signs may vary depending on the variety of the minor (natural, harmonic, melodic, etc.). Gamma F-Sharp Minor (Natural) consists of the following sounds:
- C sharp;
Despite the fact that this key is not among the most commonly used, there are quite a few examples of musical art written precisely in this key. Among the famous musical works written in this key: "Sonata for piano number 1" by Schumann, etudes in F-sharp minor Scriabin and Leshhorn. You can not ignore the "Concerto for Piano and Orchestra op. 20" Scriabin. Rachmaninov’s Prelude in F Sharp Minor No. 1 is also widely known.
The taste and color ...
So, Alexander Nikolaevich Scriabin gave the following characteristic of the tonality in F-sharp minor: the tone in F-sharp was seen in bright blue. The composer called this color "the color of pure consciousness".
It is worth noting that Scriabin called his "Sonata in F Sharp Minor for Piano No. 3, op. 23" "States of the Soul", where each of the four parts is named after a certain spiritual experience.
Nikolai Andreevich Rimsky-Korsakov saw this tonality in a pale grayish-green color.
Soviet composer Boris Vladimirovich Asafiev compared F sharp minor to the skin of a mature orange.
Belgian composer and musicologist Auguste Guevart, who did not have a color ear, but who composed his own system, consisting solely of the keys of the major fret, wrote that the expressive potential of the minor does not differ in particular richness, in contrast to the major. F-sharp minor, in his opinion, is dim, foggy and blurred.
In 1977-1978 students of the Tver Music School I. Bynkova, M. Dobrynskaya, T. Zaitseva, E. Zubryakova, S. Shcherbakova, N. Yakovlev set out to refute Guevart's assertion and, in analyzing a number of musical works, reveal the characteristics of a circle of minor keys. In the course of this study, the F-minus character was given a "agitated" characteristic.
The following conclusion is logical: how many composers - so many opinions.This is how different F-minor minor can be! Instrumental music is mostly abstract and perceived subjectively. But this is her charm!