From the composer we learn nothing about his approaches to the construction of this piece or about specific methods of musical metamorphosis. Hindemith, in fact, considered such knowledge useless, as he trenchantly observed in an early autobiographical note: " ... for people with ears my things are perfectly easy to understand, so an analysis is superfluous. For people without ears such cribs can't help." Indeed, one is struck, not by the differences, but by the similarities between the March and its prototype, von Weber's Marcia from Huit pièces for piano duet, Op. 60, No. 7, composed in 1819. But while model and original essentially agree in matters of melody, harmony, rhythm, and form, closer scrutiny reveals the process of metamorphosis to extend beyond surface modifications of these elements to more subtle but basic transformations of timbre, harmonic function, and rhythmic proportion, which ultimately affect every level and component of the composition's structure.
Copyright © 1994, American Bandmasters Association. This article first appeared in Journal of Band Research: 30:1 (1994), 1-10.
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Anderson, Gene H. "Musical Metamorphoses in Hindemith's "March" from the Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria Von Weber." Journal of Band Research 30, no. 1 (Fall 1994): 1-10.