What's the purpose of the introduction in a large-scale musical work? The role of the introduction is to establish the key and prepare for the main thematic material. Usually this is done by ending an introduction on the dominant chord in the main key which triggers the main material non-stop.
Very often, the introduction has a different character, meter, and tempo from the main material of the piece (just compare the Introduction (slow) and the main theme (fast) from the Sonata No. 8 "Pathetique" for piano by Beethoven).
Today's piece for sight-reading is Introduction from Introduction, Fugue and Variations on the chorale Christ is erstanden, Op. 15 by Johannes Barend Litzau (1822-1893), a lesser known German Romantic composer.
Here is the score for printing (p. 103). Since this is a Romantic piece, play it legato throughout. If you are curious how the chorale sounds after the Introduction, feel free to sight-read it, too (p. 104-105).
PS Often we play quite literal hymn introductions for church services. However, this piece could inspire you to create your own, musically more interesting Introduction before playing a hymn of your choice.
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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