Recording: Silke-Thora Matthies & Christian Köhn, pianists [Naxos 8.553139]

Published 1863.  Dedicated to Miss Julie Schumann.

It is a misconception that Brahms wrote a great deal of original material for piano duet.  He certainly produced skillful arrangements of his orchestral and chamber works for four hands on either one or two pianos, and the Hungarian Dances (by far his most familiar works without an opus number) are ever popular.  But these variations are not only his first publication as an original work for piano duet, but also his only work with opus number that exists only in that form.  The Op. 39 Waltzes have two solo versions in addition to the duet version, and the versions of the Liebeslieder Waltzes (Op. 52 and Op. 65) for piano duet alone are rightly subordinate to the original with voices.  Even the Hungarian Dances are almost better known in orchestral versions (mostly by others), and Brahms published a version of the first ten for piano solo.  Like the earlier Op. 9 Schumann variation set for piano solo, this composition has deeply personal associations, not least the theme Brahms chose.  Known as Schumann’s “last musical thought,” the composer sketched it in February 1854, saying that the E-flat melody was dictated to him by angels and apparently not realizing that it closely resembled the slow movement of his recently composed Violin Concerto.  He began to write piano variations on the theme, right before his fateful jump into the Rhine on February 27.  He finished the fifth of those variations the day after his rescue.  The variations themselves remained unknown until they were published in 1939 (they have become known as the Geistervariationen or “Ghost Variations”).  Clara Schumann considered the theme itself holy.  When Brahms decided to write variations on it in 1861, Clara asked him not to reveal when the theme was composed given the stigma associated with her husband’s final years.  Brahms himself finally published the original piano theme in 1893, but without Schumann’s five variations.  Brahms’s own duet variations make the most of the four-hand medium.  Each variation is highly distinct, and by the second, the melody of the theme is already abandoned.  Thus, its return in the short coda is highly satisfying.  He does stick closely to the structure and harmony throughout, including the repeated second part.  He is also more adventurous with keys than in the contemporary (and much larger) Handel Variations for solo piano.  Three of them are in three different minor keys (the “parallel,” the “mediant,” and the “relative” minor).  Variation 5 is in the remote B major.  He changes the 2/4 meter to 9/8 in Variation 5, 6/8 in Variation 7, and 4/4 for the last two.  The set is a sort of celebration of and formal farewell to Schumann.  Despite the funereal tone of Variation 4 and the more noble threnody of the last variation, there is never a sense of pure melancholy.  The lower part, the secondo, comes into its own starting with Variation 2 and is truly exploited in the two “funereal” variations.  There is much octave doubling between the hands of each part, but even this is not overdone.  The dedication to the Schumann daughter Julie is interesting.  She was 18 years old at the time, and it is possible Brahms had already taken a romantic interest in her.  This grew over the next several years, but Brahms never declared himself, and Julie married an Italian count in 1869.  While his infatuation was probably never more than that, her marriage contributed to a general sense of personal gloominess about his relationships and other things, which he channeled into the “Alto” Rhapsody, Op. 53.  Childbearing was taxing on the sickly and delicate Julie, and she died in 1872, earlier than any of her six siblings that survived childhood.

ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (First Edition from Brahms-Institut Lübeck).  Each primo page follows its corresponding secondo page.
ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (First Edition [monochrome] from Sibley Music Library).  Each primo page follows its corresponding secondo page.

ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP (From Breitkopf & Härtel Sämtliche Werke).  Each primo page follows its corresponding secondo page.
ONLINE SCORE FROM IMSLP of the original Schumann theme published by Brahms (Robert Schumanns Werke, supplement, Breitkopf & Härtel 1893)

NOTE: In this recording, each variation is on a separate track/file.  The measures for each variation are also numbered separately in the Breitkopf & Härtel Sämtliche Werke.  That numbering is followed here.  Unless noted, the tempo, key and meter continue from the preceding track.  Primo is used for the top piano duet part, secondo for the lower, or bottom part.
0:00 [m. 1]--THEMA.  Leise und innig (Quietly and tenderly/intimately).  E-FLAT MAJOR, 2/4 time.  Part 1.  The primo presents the harmonized melody.  Its two opening gestures begin on an upbeat as they sigh downward, then leap up to a descending dotted (long-short) rhythm.  The end of the second gesture reaches a full close.  The secondo simply reiterates an octave on the keynote E-flat.  The first phrase continues in the primo with more downward-sighing gestures that work upward before a syncopated descent to the preparatory “dominant” harmony.  The octaves in the secondo leap up from the E-flat, then descend in a scale before leaping down to a half-close on the same “dominant” note.
0:27 [m. 9]--The second phrase begins with the same two gestures as the first, but instead of simply moving to the “dominant” harmony, the continuation makes a full motion to that key, B-flat major.   The secondo adds a pair of faster eighth notes for the first time.
0:55 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The contrasting phrase consists of two descents after leaping upbeats.  Each begins with two longer half notes followed by a long-short rhythm.  The second one is a third higher.  The left hand of the primo has bell-like alternations.  The secondo moves away from octaves.  Its bass settles onto a low B-flat while the right hand more actively supports the motion in the primo.  After this contrasting phrase, a four-measure closing that resembles the end of Part 1 leads to a full cadence in E-flat.  The downward figures in the primo right hand are supported by an active left hand and mild chromatic motion in the secondo.
1:33 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  End of track 2:13 [28 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 1.  L’istesso Tempo.  Andante molto moderato.  Part 1.  The primo right hand embellishes the melody in sinuous, mildly chromatic sixteenth notes, indicated to be played with mild detachment, although dolce ed espressivo.  The end of each opening gesture is marked by an arching arpeggio.  The left hand resembles its previous presentation in the theme.  The continuation uses descending arpeggios with upward leaps between them to embellish the melody.  The approach to the half-close is more angular and chromatic, concluding with a descending scale line.  The secondo, after its initial long bass notes, rests completely for two measures (the fifth and sixth) before supporting the half-close.
0:19 [m. 9]--For the second phrase, the continuing sixteenth notes in the primo right hand lead up to a presentation of the embellished opening gestures an octave higher.  The left hand now plays the original opening gestures, at a higher level than its figures in the second phrase.  This upward motion in the primo allows the secondo to become more active in harmonizing the melody in its right hand.  In the continuation to the cadence in B-flat, the secondo takes the original melodic notes.  The primo left hand drops out here, and the right hand continues its decorative sixteenth notes with descending arpeggios and upward leaps, the figures moving steadily down toward the cadence.
0:37 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The primo decorates the two descents with downward-arching arpeggios split between the hands.  The secondo preserves its original long notes.  The primo continues to embellish the approach to the full cadence in E-flat with the sixteenth notes, reiterating a high B-flat four times at the end.  These reiterations define three-note groups that go against the 2/4 meter (a so-called hemiola).  The motion in the secondo helps preserve the rhythmic character of the original cadence.  The hemiola in the primo continues to the upbeat leading into the repeat.
1:05 [m. 29]--Part 2 repeated.  It is fully written out, mainly because of the changes needed at the end to settle on the closing cadence without the upbeat to the repeat, but the secondo has an actual subtle change.  It decorates its original long notes heard against the two descents with an approach from below on the downbeat.  The closing in the primo now descends to a full stop, removing two high B-flats and cutting off the hemiola after only one three-note group.  End of track 1:36 [40 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 2.  Part 1.  The secondo begins a march-like variation, piano and espressivo.  Its left hand has a long-short rhythm in the bass.  The right hand plays the narrow, churning melody, framed by a pulsing long-short-short rhythm above and below.  The lowered seventh, D-flat, is prominent in the harmony.  As the bass moves off E-flat at the end of the second measure, the primo enters with an arching interjection, beginning off the beat, then its left hand takes over the harmonized melody, mostly in thirds, now over the thumping secondo pulse.  In the continuation, the short interjections alternate between primo right and left hands, the secondo right hand joining the latter, building strongly to the half-close.
0:15 [m. 9]--The second phrase, which begins forte and has continual swells in  volume, makes much of the long-short-short rhythm.  After the upbeat, which doubles as the last exchange in the previous phrase, the pulse is heard in the right hand of both parts, arching in the secondo and static in the primo.  The churning, harmonized melody continues in the primo left hand, as does the long-short secondo bass.  The minor inflections D-flat and G-flat remain prominent.  The pulse is interrupted after the first melodic gesture by the familiar arching motion.  The primo right hand now doubles the left below the pulse.  As the phrase concludes, the pulse is subsumed by the surging arch gestures in both parts, moving to the arrival on B-flat.
0:29 [m. 17]--Part 2.  After the arching upbeat, the long-short bass is now in both secondo hands.  The pulse is re-established in the primo right hand while the churning melody, still mostly harmonized in thirds with minor-key inflections, continues in its left.  The secondo right hand joins the primo in the arching motion after the first gesture, moving in the opposite (downward) direction.  The bass remains firmly on B-flat.  The pattern is intensified, higher in pitch and building to fortissimo, on the second gesture.  The concluding phrase is powerful, dovetailing rising statements of the arch pattern in both parts over three measures, with doubled hands in the primo and a solid bass.  A massive, harmonized descent adds an extra 29th measure.
0:53 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is added for the arching upbeat.  End of track 1:19 [29 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 3.  Part 1.  This variation is graceful, but rhythmically complex.  The primo, harmonized in sixths and thirds, opens with a long-short upbeat, then continues to strategically use that rhythm and a syncopated short-long one in its arching lines, all of which are in “straight” rhythm and mildly chromatic, surging and receding in volume.  The secondo has flowing triplet-rhythm six-note groups with syncopated ties in the middle over a solid bass in broken octaves or fifths.  Halfway through the phrase, the primo has three dolce rising gestures (the last in contrary motion) before its forte descent, and the triplet groups in the secondo reach up and tumble down three times before rising against the primo.
0:18 [m. 9]--The first half of the second phrase is practically identical in the secondo, but the gestures in the primo are set higher, with a near-reversal of the parts between the hands.  In the second half, the secondo continues with similar flowing patterns, but the primo has new material.  Its right hand has slower two-note descents, marked dolce, against syncopated short-long figures in its left hand.  There is no surge to forte in the descending approach to the full arrival on B-flat.
0:36 [m. 17]--Part 2.  In the two contrasting gestures, the secondo takes the lead with rising figures in straight rhythm against a solid B-flat bass.  The triplets pass to the primo left hand, which plays narrow harmonies of seconds, thirds, and fourths.  After a measure, the primo right hand enters, dovetailing with the secondo’s rising figures and alternating equal and long-short figures.  At the close of each gesture, both right hands come together with varied direction.  As usual, the second gesture is similar but higher in pitch, the triplets continuing in the primo left hand.  The closing four-measure gesture, as usual, resembles the end of Part 1 moving to E-flat, but the secondo has a more active bass and opens the six-note groups with rests.
1:04 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is used for the upbeat.  End of track 1:36 [28 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 4.  E-FLAT MINOR.  Part 1.  The first minor-key variation is a funeral march.  It begins with a small canon led by the secondo.  In octaves, it has two rising gestures, each of which is imitated a bar later by the primo a fourth higher, also in octaves.  The mood is quiet and ominous.  The secondo gestures rise a step after their initial leap, but the primo gestures droop down.  The primo continues its drooping gestures to conclude the phrase and the motion to the “dominant.”  The secondo has two more upward leaps leading into these drooping gestures in the primo before descending toward the half-close.  At the arrival, the secondo already begins a lead-in to the small canon in the next phrase.
0:22 [m. 9]--After the secondo lead-in, the primo continues the canon between its own left and right hands, creating a double imitation, each still a fourth higher.  This does not continue with the second gesture, which only has one imitation, the primo right hand imitating the left (the right hand for once reaching up instead of drooping).  The secondo moves to the background, with longer drooping gestures.  Approaching the full arrival on B-flat, the secondo has another rising gesture, the primo has a harmonized drooping gesture that follows it, and then both come together on a harmonized arching triplet rhythm to punctuate the cadence.  Once again, the secondo begins its lead-in at the cadence, now bridging to Part 2.
0:44 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The two contrasting gestures are both in full canon at the octave between secondo and primo.  The secondo has already started a measure early.  Each gesture arches up and back down, the primo adding its characteristic drooping at the end.  The secondo bass now adds a funereal thumping on the second beat, moving from triplets under the first gesture to faster sixteenth notes under the second and the closing.  The primo extends its drooping figure to a fifth measure after the second gesture, leading into the closing.  It then adds two more, following static secondo descents.  Approaching the cadence, the secondo bass moves to tremolo 32nd notes on a broken third.  The parts again come together on the arching triplets, now in contrary motion.  There is a one-measure extension, on which the secondo begins the repetition.
1:19 [m. 30]--Part 2, varied repeat.  It is written out, mainly because the funereal thumping in the secondo bass on the second beat of each measure becomes more active.  It now begins with the sixteenth notes under the first gesture and moves to the more ominous tremolo 32nd notes (now in octaves) for the second gesture and the closing.  The ending is also altered.  The extra measure is still added, but the secondo does not participate in the arching triplets.  Previously, these triplets had not completed the cadence, and now the downward-arching motion in the primo is changed to complete the arrival.  End of track 1:57 [42 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 5.  Poco più animato.  B MAJOR, 9/8 time.  Part 1.  The remote B-major key is closer to the preceding E-flat minor than to the main E-flat major.  The key shift is striking, as is the change from simple duple meter to the compound triple 9/8.  A swinging waltz-like motion is led by the secondo, starting with an upbeat octave leap, and characterized by longer notes at the beginning of each measure, mostly harmonized in sixths and thirds, dolce ed espressivo.  An upward-turning figure is passed from the secondo bass on the downbeat to the primo in harmony on the second large beat.  The primo figures reach higher, then the hands separate, the right hand playing on the upbeat before the parts join for the half-close.
0:13 [m. 9]--In the second phrase, the primo takes over the melody and its harmony an octave higher.  The higher part does not take part in the passing of the upward-turning figure, which is handled entirely by the secondo, incorporating both its own former downbeat and the harmonized responses previously taken by the primo.  The second half, as usual, deviates from the first phrase by making a more complete motion to the “dominant” key, in this case F-sharp major.
0:26 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The secondo takes over the main presentation again, which resembles Part 1, even in the two contrasting gestures.  Here, however, it is the primo that plays the upward-turning figure on the downbeat, in its right hand, and the secondo bass that plays the response.  The primo also adds punctuating harmonies in its left hand.  The louder closing phrase has another change.  The upward-turning figures are abandoned, and the primo plays an active harmonized swinging motion on the downbeat, against the long notes in the melodic presentation from the secondo, whose closing cadence has the fifth (F-sharp) on top.
0:47 [m. 29]--Part 2, varied repeat.  The parts are reversed, but not exactly.  As in the second phrase of Part 1, the primo plays the main material, but does not play the upward-turning figure.  Both the downbeat statements and the higher responses are taken by the secondo.  In the closing phrase, which is quieter than the first statement, the swinging motion previously played by the primo is replaced in the secondo by flowing arpeggios over a solid bass approaching the cadence (F-sharp on top).  End of track 1:10 [40 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 6.  Allegro non troppo.  E-FLAT MAJOR, 2/4 time.  Part 1.  Back in the home key and meter, this exuberant variation begins with jubilant leaping figures in the primo using fast dotted (long-short) rhythm, reaching high.  Against these, the secondo has continuous surging, undulating six-note groups in triplet rhythm.  In both parts, the hands are doubled an octave apart.  Halfway through the phrase, the primo incorporates the six-note triplet groups and the secondo the dotted-rhythm figures, with the parts joyously alternating in quasi-imitation.  Approaching the half-close, with a sudden hush and buildup, the secondo hammers the dotted rhythm in harmony while the single-voice primo takes over the triplets.
0:13 [m. 9]--In the second phrase, the primo remains on the six-note triplet figures throughout, re-establishing the octave doubling.  The secondo places a varied version of the leaping melody in bass octaves, harmonizing and occasionally doubling it with the right hand.  Approaching the full arrival on B-flat, there is another sudden hush and buildup, and the secondo again hammers things home with powerful descents on the dotted rhythm.  The primo here adds syncopation between each six-note group, holding notes over across beats and bar lines before tumbling down at the point of arrival.
0:25 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The first contrasting gesture turns unexpectedly to E-flat minor.  After a forceful dotted-rhythm descent in the secondo, both parts, suddenly hushed, wind smoothly up and back down in harmonized “straight” rhythm against a syncopated bass.  Dotted-rhythm figures in both parts close it off.  The second contrasting gesture is similar but starts with an abrupt turn to E major, moving toward a striking arrival back home in E-flat with dotted figures in the primo.  The closing phrase returns to the Part 1 material, with joyously hammering doubled dotted-rhythm descents in the primo building strongly against the triplet-rhythm six-note groups in the secondo right hand, which trails down at the end over a solid bass.
0:45 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  The second ending cuts off the trailing secondo for a stronger conclusion.  End of track 1:08 [28 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 7.  Con moto.  L’istesso tempo, 6/8 time.  Part 1.  In the swaying 6/8 meter, a murmuring trill-like undulation is established, alternating between high and low in both parts, legato and dolce.  A “mid-range” statement in the secondo right hand and the primo left hand is followed by an “outer” statement in secondo bass octaves and both hands of the primo.  This exchange happens twice, matching the initial two statements of the opening thematic gesture.  The second half of the phrase begins with two shorter exchanges, in which the “mid-range” portions take more space.  The secondo then has a brief hemiola (implied 3/4 measure), with the primo joining to restore the 6/8 flow and complete the half-close.
0:15 [m. 9]--The second phrase reverses the pattern of the first, with the two full “outer” statements preceding the “mid-range” ones.  The second half, moving to the arrival on B-flat, omits the shorter exchanges.  Instead, both parts join on a large downward-sweeping arch.  The secondo left hand initially plays bass octaves in contrary motion against this arch, but then moves to long bass notes.  The secondo right hand then takes over the contrary-motion octaves while the primo left hand thickens its harmony to make up for what the secondo right hand had been playing.  The closing cadence comes with more alternation, short-long in the secondo against long-short in the primo.
0:31 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The left hand of the primo pauses for six measures while its right hand introduces a yearning, rocking molto espressivo melody that gradually speeds up, adding upward reaches and descents.  It is presented in two segments matching the contrasting gestures.  At the end of the second, with the right hand reaching very high and building in volume, the left joins an octave below.  Against all this, the secondo right hand continues the undulating pattern, alternating octaves and thirds on the first gesture, then expanding and contracting intervals on the second one, both with a static top note.  Its left hand moves from held octaves to broken octaves.  The closing phrase undulates, then arches in contrary motion, the primo in thirds and the secondo in octaves, each doubled in both hands until the secondo thins at the final cadence.
0:53 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is included for the primo upbeat, and the second ending is marked with a fermataEnd of track 1:22 [28 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 8.  Poco più vivo.  G MINOR, 2/4 time.  Part 1.  In yet another unexpected key, this variation evokes the “Hungarian” element of which Brahms was so fond.  It is perhaps the most straightforward of the ten.  The primo, starting with harmonies in thirds but quickly expanding to sixths, presents a melancholy, swaying melody, dolce ed espressivo.  It becomes wider halfway through the phrase, the harmonies in sixths breaking with an upward reach to the half-close (in D).  The secondo plays a pattern of triplet-rhythm harmonies beginning off the beat after bass notes.  The rhythm clashes with the straight rhythm of the primo melody.  There is a downward motion by half-steps in the bass before the half-close.
0:09 [m. 9]--The second phrase begins like the first, but this time the harmonies in the primo are doubled in both hands instead of split between them, creating a fuller sound, and the right hand is an octave higher.  The second half of the phrase diverges as usual, with the primo harmonies, still doubled, adding more syncopation before the upward reach to the full arrival on D (the “dominant” in G minor).  The secondo patterns of triplet chords beginning off the beat following bass notes continues through the cadence.
0:18 [m. 17]--Part 2.  The secondo right hand takes over the melodic presentation for the two contrasting gestures, but it is unharmonized.  Its left hand continues to play bass octaves, adding a downward plunge with a dotted rhythm at the end of each short gesture, following a similar pattern in the right hand.  The primo takes over the clashing triplet rhythm, the harmonies spread through both hands with some doubling, especially at the end of each gesture.  The triplets steadily rise through each gesture.  The triplet rhythm is continuous, without the previous off-beat patterns.  The closing phrase in G minor returns to the patterns of Part 1, with the harmonized melody in both hands of the primo and the secondo taking the off-beat triplets.
0:31 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is used for the upbeat.  End of track 0:49 [28 mm.] 
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 9.  C MINOR, 4/4 time.  Part 1.  Each measure is twice as long for this variation in the “relative” key.   The primo plays forceful long-short rhythms, energico, alternating between leaping figures and harmonized ones.  The secondo has either rapid rising 32nd-note runs (including on the upbeat) or heavy harmonic thirds in triplet rhythm.  The triplets are played against the “leaping” figures and the runs against the “harmonized” ones.  Both parts are largely doubled at the octave between the hands.  The second half of the phrase passes four hammered descents between the parts, led by the primo.  The strong half-close is punctuated by the rapid runs passed between the hands of the secondo and finally to the primo.
0:19 [m. 9]--With the primo having played the upbeat run, the second phrase reverses the patterns of the first.  The secondo has the forceful long-short rhythms (both “leaping” and “harmonized”) and the primo has the 32nd-note runs and the triplets.  Its triplets are mostly in harmonized sixths instead of thirds (contracting at the end of each descent), and they only descend whereas the previous secondo thirds had upward leaps.  There is less doubling, as the secondo left hand plays bass octaves under the “harmonized” figures and the second set of primo runs is not doubled.  The secondo now leads the exchange of hammered descents toward the cadence in G.  The closing runs return to the earlier pattern, with the secondo leading.
0:37 [m. 17]--Part 2.  In the two contrasting gestures, which begin quietly and build, the primo begins with descending triplets in thirds or sixths, then moves to the “harmonized” version of the long-short rhythm (shifted back a beat).  The secondo has straight figures alternating high and low, the top notes expanding over a low G.  These are heard under the primo triplets.  The secondo itself moves to arching triplets under the long-short figures.  All elements are doubled in the hands except the arching secondo triplets, which are played over bass octaves.  The closing phrase moves to the exchange of hammered descents (now five), but after two, the secondo moves to plunging 32nd-note runs.  Rising runs again mark the powerful close.
1:05 [m. 17]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is used for the two upbeat runs.  The secondo closes off the second ending after two runs by leaping down to an octave C.  End of track 1:36 [28 mm.]
0:00 [m. 1]--VARIATION 10.  Molto moderato, alla marcia.  E-FLAT MAJOR, 4/4 time.  Part 1.  The long 4/4 measures are retained for the final variation, but the phrases are reduced to four measures.  The tempo is much slower.  The secondo begins the threnody-like march, with a persistent dotted (long-short) rhythm in the right hand, gradually adding harmony, against drum-roll imitations, rising in triplet rhythm to an arrival note, in the left hand.  The primo enters at the end of the second measure with three rising upbeat figures in straight-rhythm octaves.  A slow, steady buildup begins.  At the end of the phrase, after a single descending “drum roll” in the secondo bass, the parts come together in harmony on the dotted rhythm.
0:23 [m. 5]--The second phrase is an intensification.  The primo participates in the dotted-rhythm figures from the outset (adding harmonies above single notes in the secondo right hand).  The primo left hand continues with the dotted rhythm when its right hand inserts the rising upbeat figures.  The buildup continues.  As in all the variations, there is a more decisive motion toward the “dominant” (again B-flat).
0:45 [m. 9]--Part 2.  For the two contrasting gestures (now two measures each), the dotted rhythm moves to static octaves on B-flat in the primo right hand.  The primo left hand, mostly harmonized in thirds, and the secondo, in octaves split between the hands, develop the straight-rhythm figures in alternation.  These grow from the initial rising gesture, include light syncopation across beats, and add varied direction in both parts.  These contrasting phrases are marked forte and build up to fortissimo.  In the closing phrase (also two measures, leading to a powerful cadence), the “drum roll” figures return in the secondo left hand, moving in both directions, and expanding two of the descending gestures to four-note lead-ins instead of triplets.
1:20 [m. 9]--Part 2 repeated.  A first ending is added for a sixteenth-note upbeat.
1:54 [m. 15]--CODA.  The short coda is appended to the variation.  The secondo quietly begins the threnody pattern again, with the gradually harmonized dotted-rhythm figures and the “drum roll” triplets.  These add harmonies indicating a motion to A-flat, D-flat, and G-flat, but they quickly find their way back to E-flat.   The primo rests until the upbeat to the third measure, whereupon it begins, in harmony, to intone the rhythm, if not the original pitches, of the Schumann theme itself, which of course includes the dotted rhythm.  The secondo halts its drum roll under this entry, and there is a turn to minor as the primo descends.
2:20 [m. 19]--The pattern begins again, but the lead-in is extended to three measures, and the primo joins the dotted rhythm on the third.  Again, there is harmonic motion toward the “flat” side.  On the fourth measure, the primo begins to intone the beginning of the Schumann theme on its original pitches at a louder level.  Under this, the secondo continues the dotted rhythm, now in right-hand octaves on E-flat and B-flat, and its left hand moves to downward-arching low bass octaves with syncopation across beats.
2:49 [m. 24]--The primo has played the first four measures of the original theme (here notated as two measures).  The hymn-like continuation resembles the shape of the theme’s fifth and sixth measures, but is different in pitch and harmony, and veers toward A-flat and D-flat.  The secondo continues its dotted rhythm in the right hand, but its bass becomes more static.  The harmony quickly veers back, and the primo plays the same gesture at a lower level, closer to the theme’s original pitches, and more quietly.  There are a couple of chromatic minor-key inflections.  The dotted rhythm in the secondo moves to a low bass E-flat.  Under the closing chord, the secondo bass plays a tremolo.    The theme and coda equal the usual 28 measures.  End of track 3:54 (runoff after 3:40) [28 mm.]
18:40 total--END OF VARIATIONS [347 mm. total]