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G minor
B-flat Major key signature.png
Relative key B major
Parallel key G major
Component pitches
G, A, B, C, D, E, F, G

G minor is a minor scale based on G, consisting of the pitches G, A, B, C, D, E, and F. For the harmonic minor scale, the F is raised to F. Its relative major is B-flat major, and its parallel major is G major.

Changes needed for the melodic and harmonic versions of the scale are written in with accidentals as necessary. G minor is one of two flat key signatures that requires a sharp for the leading tone (the other is D minor).

In the Baroque era, G minor was considered the "key of tragic consummation." During this period music in G minor was usually written with a one-flat key signature, and some modern editions of that repertoire retain that convention.

Mozart's use of G Minor

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart considered G minor the key most suitable for expressing sadness and tragedy,[1] and many of his minor key works are in G minor, such as the Piano Quartet No. 1 and the String Quintet in G minor. Though Mozart touched on various minor keys in his symphonies, G minor is the only minor key he used as a main key for his numbered symphonies (No. 25, and the famous No. 40). In the Classical period, symphonies in G minor almost always used four horns, two in G and two in B-flat alto.[2] Another convention of G minor symphonies observed in Mozart's No. 25 was the choice of E flat major for the slow movement, with other examples including Haydn's No. 39 and Vanhal's G minor symphony from before 1771 (Bryan Gm1).[3]

Well-known works in G minor

See also: List of symphonies in G minor.

References

  1. ^ Hellmut Federhofer, foreword to the Bärenreiter Urtext of Mozart's Piano Quartet in G minor. "G-Moll war für Mozart zeitlebens die Schicksaltonart, die ihm für den Ausdruck des Schmerzes und der Tragik am geeignetsten erschien." ("G minor was, for Mozart, the most suitable fate-key throughout his life for the expression of pain and tragedy.")(
  2. ^ H. C. Robbins Landon, Mozart and Vienna. New York: Schirmer Books (1991): 48. "Writing for four horns was a regular part of the Sturm und Drang G minor equipment." Robbins Landon also notes that Mozart's No. 40 was first intended to have four horns.
  3. ^ James Hepokoski og Warren Darcy, Elements of Sonata Theory (Oxford University Press: 2006) p. 328
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Simple English

G minor
[[Image:|120px]]
Relative keyB major
Parallel keyG major
Notes in this scale
G, A, B, C, D, E, F, G

G minor is a minor scale based on G.

Its relative major is B-flat major. G minor is one of two flat key signatures that needs a sharp for the seventh note (the other is D minor).

During the Baroque period, music in G minor was usually written with a one-flat key signature.

Mozart's use of G Minor

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart thought that G minor was the most suitable key for showing sadness and tragedy,[1] and many of his minor key works are in G minor, such as the Piano Quartet No. 1 and the String Quintet in G minor. G minor is the only minor key he used as a main key for his numbered symphonies (No. 25, and the famous No. 40). In the Classical period, symphonies in G minor almost always used four horns, two in G and two in B-flat alto.[2] G minor symphonies like Mozart's No. 25 often used E flat major for the slow movement, including Haydn's No. 39 and Vanhal's G minor symphony from before 1771 (Bryan Gm1).[3]

Famous classical music in G minor

  • Fantasia and Fugue in G minor "The Great", BWV 542- Bach
  • Symphony No. 83 "The Hen" - Haydn
  • Symphony No. 40 - Mozart
  • Ballade No. 1 in G minor - Chopin
  • Polonaise in G minor - Chopin
  • Piano Concerto No. 2 - Saint-Saëns
  • Slavonic Dance No. 8 in G minor - Dvořák
  • Sicilliene, Op. 78 - Fauré
  • Prelude in G Minor - Rachmaninoff
  • Sonata for Cello and Piano in G minor - Rachmaninoff
  • Most of Verdi's Requiem (the Dies Irae), is in G minor.
  • Concerto No. 2 in G minor, Op. 8, RV 315, "Summer" from The Four Seasons - Antonio Vivaldi
  • Adagio in G minor - "Albinoni's Adagio", now said to be written by Remo Giazotto
  • Violin Concerto No. 1 in G minor, Op. 26 - Max Bruch
  • Christmas Concerto - Arcangelo Corelli

See also: List of symphonies in G minor.

References

  1. Hellmut Federhofer, foreword to the Bärenreiter Urtext of Mozart's Piano Quartet in G minor. "G-Moll war für Mozart zeitlebens die Schicksaltonart, die ihm für den Ausdruck des Schmerzes und der Tragik am geeignetsten erschien." ("G minor was, for Mozart, the most suitable fate-key throughout his life for the expression of pain and tragedy.")(
  2. H. C. Robbins Landon, Mozart and Vienna. New York: Schirmer Books (1991): 48. "Writing for four horns was a regular part of the Sturm und Drang G minor equipment." Robbins Landon also notes that Mozart's No. 40 was first intended to have four horns.
  3. James Hepokoski og Warren Darcy, Elements of Sonata Theory (Oxford University Press: 2006) p. 328

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