Though subtle, many aspects in this piece pay tribute to the music of Robert Schumann. Surprising shifts from legato passages to sudden staccatos relate to Schumann’s own personality changes as represented by his fictional characters, Florestan and Eusebius. Additionally, creating a vivid atmosphere is both important in his music as well as in this work by Bartók. Characteristics unique to this piece are eighth notes against dotted sixteenths as well as expressive dynamic changes. Deceptively simple in appearance, this piece presents many musical and technical challenges for students.
Caroline Krause, Iowa Center for Research by Undergraduates Fellow