A major

A major (or the key of A) is a major scale based on A, with the pitches A, B, C, D, E, F, and G. Its key signature has three sharps. Its relative minor is F-sharp minor and its parallel minor is A minor. The key of A major is the only key where a Neapolitan sixth chord on requires both a flat and a natural accidental.

A major
Relative keyF-sharp minor
Parallel keyA minor
Dominant keyE major
SubdominantD major
Component pitches
A, B, C, D, E, F, G

The A major scale is:

In the treble, alto, and bass clefs, the G in the key signature is placed higher than C. However, in the tenor clef, it would require a ledger line and so G is placed lower than C.

History

Although not as rare in the symphonic literature as sharper keys, examples of symphonies in A major are not as numerous as for D major or G major. Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, Bruckner's Symphony No. 6 and Mendelssohn's Symphony No. 4 comprise a nearly complete list of symphonies in this key in the Romantic era. Mozart's Clarinet Concerto and Clarinet Quintet are both in A major, along with his 23rd piano concerto, and generally Mozart was more likely to use clarinets in A major than in any other key besides E-flat major.[1] Moreover, the climax part of Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto is also in A major.

The key of A major occurs frequently in chamber music and other music for strings, which favor sharp keys. Franz Schubert's Trout Quintet and Antonín Dvořák's Piano Quintet No. 2 are both in A major. Johannes Brahms, César Franck, and Gabriel Fauré wrote violin sonatas in A major. In connection to Beethoven's Kreutzer Sonata, Peter Cropper said that A major "is the fullest sounding key for the violin."[2]

According to Christian Friedrich Daniel Schubart, A major is a key suitable for "declarations of innocent love, ... hope of seeing one's beloved again when parting; youthful cheerfulness and trust in God."[3]

For orchestral works in A major, the timpani are typically set to A and E a fifth apart, rather than a fourth apart as for most other keys. Hector Berlioz complained about the custom of his day in which timpani tuned to A and E a fifth apart were notated C and G a fourth apart, a custom which survived as late as the music of Franz Berwald.[4]

Notable compositions in A major

Notable songs

See also

References

  1. Mark Anson-Cartwright (2000). "Chromatic Features of E-Major Works of the Classical Period". Music Theory Spectrum. 22 (2): 178. JSTOR 745959.
  2. Peter Cropper, "Beethoven's Violin Sonata in A major, Op.47 'Kreutzer': First Movement", The Strad, March 2009, p. 64
  3. Rita Steblin (1996) A History of Key Characteristics in the Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries, University of Rochester Press, p. 123, ISBN 0835714187.
  4. N. D. Mar (1981). Anatomy of the Orchestra University of California Press, p. 349, ISBN 0520045009.
  5. "Dancing Queen" sheet music sample
  6. "Fernando" sheet music sample
  7. "Highway to Hell" sheet music sample
  8. "Quit Playing Games (with My Heart)" sheet music sample
  9. "Here Comes the Sun" sheet music sample
  10. "In My Life" sheet music sample
  11. "Ticket to Ride" sheet music sample
  12. "Everything I Own" sheet music sample
  13. "Sweet Surrender" sheet music sample
  14. "A Summer Song" sheet music sample
  15. "Oh Girl" sheet music sample
  16. "Mr. Sandman" sheet music sample
  17. "Sailing" sheet music sample
  18. "Tears in Heaven" sheet music sample
  19. Kelly, Claude; Gottwald, Lukasz; Martin, Max (2009-02-27). "My Life Would Suck Without You". Musicnotes.com. Retrieved 2019-12-09.
  20. "Take Me Home, Country Roads" sheet music sample
  21. "The Game of Love" sheet music sample
  22. "We Got the Beat" sheet music sample
  23. "It's My Party" sheet music sample
  24. "Electric Avenue" sheet music sample
  25. "It Never Rains in Southern California" sheet music sample
  26. "Rock Around the Clock" sheet music sample
  27. "MMMBop" sheet music sample
  28. "I'm Henry VIII, I Am" sheet music sample
  29. "I Think We're Alone Now" sheet music sample
  30. "I Think We're Alone Now" sheet music sample
  31. "Stand by Me" sheet music sample
  32. "Louie Louie" sheet music sample
  33. Germanotta, Stefani; Garibay, Fernando; Blair, Paul (2011-08-05). "The Edge of Glory". Musicnotes.com. Retrieved 2019-12-09.
  34. Germanotta, Stefani (2011-10-04). "You and I". Musicnotes.com. Retrieved 2019-12-09.
  35. "If You Could Read My Mind" sheet music sample
  36. "Footloose" sheet music sample
  37. "Beautiful Soul" sheet music sample
  38. "Jack & Diane" sheet music sample
  39. "Snowbird" sheet music sample
  40. "You Needed Me" sheet music sample
  41. "Oh, Pretty Woman" sheet music sample
  42. "I Will Always Love You" sheet music sample
  43. "Leaving on a Jet Plane" sheet music sample
  44. "Puff, the Magic Dragon" sheet music sample
  45. "De Do Do Do, De Da Da Da" sheet music sample
  46. "People" sheet music sample
  47. "The Way We Were" sheet music sample
  48. "When Will I See You Again" sheet music sample
  49. "Wild Thing" sheet music sample
  50. "Valerie" sheet music sample
  51. "Stand by Your Man" sheet music sample

Further reading

  • Colin Lawson, Mozart: Clarinet Concerto, A Cambridge Music Handbook, Cambridge University Press, 1996.
  • Media related to A major at Wikimedia Commons
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.