I was looking at the Liszt transcription for Beethoven's 7th symphony for solo piano, and in the second movement there seems to be no accent on the first chord of every measure (75-98), yet when listening to the orchestral version, Katsaris's interpretation and a synthetic application rendering of the movement, they all play the first chord extremely loud, and the chord that is actually accented is played in a similar manner to it's surrounding chords (i.e. in a relatively low intensity), so I am asking as to why is this the case with the notation ?.

P.S: I did notice that the accented chord is a bit louder in the orchestral version, but still, it is far softer compared to the first chord which is unaccented.Allegretto (75-98)

  • 1
    May I ask what you mean by "a synthetic application rendering of the movement"?
    – Richard
    Mar 27 '20 at 16:20
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    A video on YouTube by Tomplay: youtu.be/x8StWgkSF7k. The only exception is a synthetic rendering by PianoCzarX, in which the transcription is played as I imagine it to be played according to the sheets: youtu.be/X-KKdCX-J1c Mar 27 '20 at 16:26
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    I am not a native English speaker nor have I been to an English-speaking country before, so please excuse my English, I try my best to learn. Mar 27 '20 at 16:28
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    Trust me, your English is fantastic! Honestly, I never would have thought by reading your post that you were not a native speaker.
    – Richard
    Mar 27 '20 at 16:32

Part of the basic concept of meter is that the first beat of a measure is accented. There is no need to specifically write out that default accent on beat one in notation.

If beat one gets an accent by default, it stands to reason the other beats are unaccented.

2/4 meter should have a kind of | BOOM pa | BOOM pa| feel where BOOM is the accented beat one. At least that is the basic idea. In a real performance a player can treat accent more subtly as phrases are played.

When the accent is written on beat two it is to make clear the feel should be | BOOM BOOM | BOOM BOOM |. Don't lighten up on beat two! Instead of the oscillating feel of strong and weak - sort of like a pendulum - the accent of beat two results in all strong beats. It creates an incessant feel more like a hammer than a pendulum.


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