D major


D major
D major
Relative key B minor
Parallel key D minor
Component pitches
D, E, F, G, A, B, C, D

D major (or the key of D) is a major scale based on D, consisting of the pitches D, E, F, G, A, B, and C. Its key signature consists of two sharps. Its relative minor is B minor and its parallel minor is D minor.

D major is well-suited to violin music because of the structure of the instrument, which is tuned G D A E. The open strings resonate sympathetically with the D string, producing a sound that is especially brilliant.

It is thus no coincidence that many classical composers throughout the centuries have chosen to write violin concertos in D major, including those by Mozart (No. 2, 1775, No. 4, 1775); Ludwig van Beethoven (1806); Paganini (No. 1, 1817); Brahms (1878); Tchaikovsky (1878); Prokofiev (No. 1, 1917); Stravinsky (1931); and Korngold (1945).

Ascending and descending D major scale.

It is also appropriate for guitar music, with drop D tuning making two Ds available as open strings.

For some beginning wind instrument students, however, D major is not a very suitable key, since it transposes to E major on B-flat wind instruments, and beginning methods generally tend to avoid keys with more than three sharps.

Even so, the clarinet in B-flat is still often used for music in D major, and is perhaps the sharpest key that is practical for the instrument. There are composers however who, in writing a piece in D minor with B-flat clarinets, will have them change to clarinets in A if the music switches to D major.

The vast majority of tin whistles are in D, since they are often used in music with fiddles.

In the Baroque period, D major was regarded as "the key of glory";[1] hence many trumpet concertos were in D major, such as those by Fasch, Gross, Molter (No. 2), Leopold Mozart, Telemann (No. 2), and Giuseppe Torelli. Many trumpet sonatas were in D major, too, such as those by Corelli, Franceschini, Purcell, Torelli, etc. "The Trumpet Shall Sound" and the "Hallelujah" chorus from Handel's Messiah, and his coronation anthem Zadok the Priest are also in D major.

With the invention of the valve trumpet, however, preference shifted to the flatter keys, and thus Haydn wrote his famous trumpet concerto in the key of E-flat major.

23 of Haydn's 104 symphonies are in D major, making it the most often used main key of his symphonies. The vast majority of Mozart's unnumbered symphonies are in D major, namely K. 66c, 81/73, 97/73m, 95/73n, 120/111a and 161/163/141a. The symphony evolved from the overture, and "D major was by far the most common key for overtures in the second half of the eighteenth century."[2] This continued even into the Romantic Period, and was used for the "triumphant" final movements of several symphonies, including Beethoven's Ninth Symphony, Gustav Mahler's Titan symphony, and Jean Sibelius'* *Radetzky march– Johann Strauss Father

 Second Symphony.

Scriabin considered D major to be golden in color and, in a discussion with Rimsky-Korsakov, he gave an example from one of Rimsky-Korsakov's own operas where a character sang in D major about gold.

Citations

  1. ^ Rita Steblin: A History of Key Characteristics in the Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries (Rochester, University of Rochester Press: 1996) p. 124 "The key of triumph, of Hallelujahs, of war-cries, of victory-rejoicing."
  2. ^ Rice, John (1998). Antonio Salieri & Viennese Opera. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. p. 124. 

External links

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