COMPOSITIONS compositions

Waltz in D flat major [Op. 70 No. 3] incypit

Genre: Waltz

Key: D-flat major

Opus/WN: [Op. 70 No. 3]

Creation date: 1829

Acc. to Fontana: 70 nr 3

Acc. to Paderewski: IX/13

Acc. to Turło: 219

Instruments: piano


There is much to suggest that Chopin’s favourite instrument after the piano was the cello. He liked its deep, soft, noble singing sound. At times, while listening to his piano works, one has the impression that in certain sections that instrument’s voice can be heard. One such work is the Waltz in D flat major (published by Fontana as Op. 70 No. 3), endowed with a cello phrase of special significance – a waltz with a secret. We owe the revelation of that secret to an extant letter of 3 October 1829, addressed to Tytus Woyciechowski. In it, Chopin writes of his ‘ideal’ (Konstancja Gładkowska), who ‘inspired me this morning to write the little waltz I send you. Note one place marked +. No one knows about it but you. […] In the trio, the bass song should dominate up to the top treble e flat in the 5th bar, about which you don’t have to be told, because you feel’.

It is quite surprising that this first of two waltzes composed in the key of D flat major failed to win sufficient recognition in the composer’s eyes for it to be published. It is subtly counterpointed, and so rhythmically slightly ‘disturbed’. But thanks to the dense texture of thirds, fifths and sixths, it is also very harmonious. During Chopin’s day, it was said to be ‘shrouded in melancholy’.

Author: Mieczysław Tomaszewski
[Cykl audycji "Fryderyka Chopina Dzieła Wszystkie"]
Polish Radio, program II


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