Peripetie Arnold Schoenberg Analysis Essay

Peripetie by Arnold Schoenberg: Analysis and Activities

Set Work (AoS2)

Comprehensive guide to Peripetie, addressing every point of the Edexcel specification. Detailed notes and differentiated tasks for listening, performing and composing.

Unit 1: Whole piece analysed bar-by-bar, to aid understanding for all
Unit 2: Step-by-step composition task
Unit 3: Special activities to improve music vocabulary for weaker students
Plus Practice exam paper for Sections A+B with full mark schemes

  • Differentiated composing & performing activities for serialist music, a biography of Arnold Schoenberg, and cross-curricular links with Philosophy
  • Clear descriptions of what is needed to get an A* for your higher level students
  • Meets key skills and wider curriculum requirements

Peripetie from Five Orchestral Pieces

Five Orchestral Pieces is an atonal Expressionist piece. It was completed in 1909. The first performance took place in London in 1912.

Schoenberg described it as "a vivid, uninterrupted succession of colours and moods". Peripetie is the fourth movement.

Peripetie can be translated as 'a sudden change of fortune'.

The orchestra

Five Orchestral Pieces is written for a very large orchestra using some unusual instruments.

There are three flutes, oboes, clarinets and bassoons (instead of the normal pairs) plus piccolo, cor anglais, clarinet in D, bass clarinet and contrabassoon. There are extra horns, trumpets and trombones plus a tuba. The percussion section includes xylophone, cymbals, tam tam (a large gong) and bass drum.

Instruments often play at the extreme of their registers. There are many performance directions in the score. Schoenberg was looking for very specific tone colours or timbres.

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