Night Aria

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The Queen of the Night Aria from Mozart’s The Magic Flute contains many interesting figures harmonically and contextually. The piece uses transient modulations, sequences, Neapolitan 6 chords, and other such techniques to keep an exciting harmony to support the rage aria being sung on top of it. These harmonies help draw connections between important text and the music so that the instrumentalist and the vocalist have interwoven parts that work to support each other. The piece begins on D minor chord as the tonic, but that the first ½ beat makes the piece appear to start on a first inversion D minor. This is because there is a trill-like figure in the bass which sounds the root separately while the other two bass notes sound are ringing,…show more content…
This leads into measures 24 through 28 where a sequence is set up by the model in measures 24 and 25 that is transposed down a 3rd in measures 26 and 27 where it transposed once more in measure 28 before breaking the sequence in measure 29. Measures 29 and 30 focus on the vocal line arpeggiating the F major triad before shifting back into lyrics in the second half of measure 32, using the same harmonies that set up these same lyrics in measure 18. The measure 32 phrase, unlike the measure 18 phrase, leads to a PAC in F major. This sets up a repetition of measures 24-31 before the bassline goes into a chromatic line leading into a I chord in first inversion in measure 45, setting up “so bist du meine tochter nimmermehr” once more on the vocal part to lead toward a cadence, but this section is tricky, because the upper accompaniment goes into a 16th note run, making it unlikely that there is cadence until the first chord of measure 51 on the F major chord. This is supported by the piano dynamic marking immediately following that chord. The next 7 measure are the vocal line singing over octave F 16th notes running in the upper accompaniment while the bass line runs eight note scalar patterns until measure 58 sets up a transient modulation to G minor.
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