Johannes Brahms
in E-flat Major, Op. 117 No. 1

The tender, dreamy main theme of this Intermezzo sounds like something a parent could sing for a child at bedtime.

ID: 203
Key: E-flat Major
Year: 1892
Level: 8
Period: Early Romantic
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Lullaby to sorrow

The first intermezzo in Brahms Op. 117 is reserved and poignant. A tender melody is embedded within bell-like octaves. Brahms added two lines of text that said, “Sleep well, my little child. It pains me greatly to see you weep.” The poetry fits the music perfectly: the first stanza in German – Schlaf sanft mein Kind, schlaf sanft und schön! – corresponds exactly to the first two bars of music, while the second stanza (about the weeping) matches the middle section, which descends into dark, murky depths, using the parallel key of E-flat Minor.


Composed in 1892 at Bad Ischl, together with the Seven Fantasies Op. 116 the three Intermezzi for solo piano, Op. 117 are among the final works of Johannes Brahms. When Brahms sent the Intermezzi to Clara Schumann, she answered, “in these pieces I at last feel musical life stir once again in my soul”.

Forum posts about this piece:

Brahms intermezzi opus 117 no 1 by chris2014
I have a question about the above topic, during the middle section (Più adagio), measure 31 i believe, the right hand has 4 note chords (Bb, Db, Fb, Ab) then falls to a single note (Ab). similarly two...

Question regarding Brahms Intermezzo Op 117-1 by Presto Agitato
On the left corner of the partiture,i see a german phrase. Which is the meaning of that phrase? ???

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Intermezzo Op. 117 No. 1 in E-flat Major (published in 1892) from Three Intermezzi by Johannes Brahms - piano sheet music to download and print instantly.
Intermezzo in E-flat Major - Op. 117 No. 1 is a piano piece by the early romantic composer Johannes Brahms who lived between the years 1833 and 1897.
The composition was first published in 1892 and is included in Three Intermezzi by Brahms.