Seeing music: The Moonlight Sonata, charted

Seeing music: The Moonlight Sonata, charted

A bar chart might be the simplest type of graph, but this one, showing the number of times each note is played in Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata No. 14, is nonetheless very revealing. The repeating pattern up and down the keyboard shows how the piece is built around the tonic triad of C#, G# and E — the first three notes of the piece — but in addition, the composer manages to wander to all twelve tones of the scale. The chart shows Beethoven’s thorough chromaticism and helps explain how he gave the piece its meandering, meditative, somnambulant sound. Listen here.

Many thanks to Davide Oliveri for sharing this chart with Know More. Click here to see charts for other pieces by Beethoven, Chopin and Mozart.

Read more: http://knowmore.washingtonpost.com/2014/09/10/seeing-music-the-moonlight-sonata-charted/

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