1900 - 1990
|Tom and Jerry|
'The Cat and the Mouse' was in fact Copland's first published work, and is a piano piece based on the fable by Jean de la Fontaine about the difference between the young and confident mouse, with the old and pitiful cat. When I first heard the piece, I immediately thought of the famous animation 'Tom & Jerry' which is famous for its literal music to mimic the two characters running into things, falling of surfaces and basically terrorising each other. This is obvious immediately as the sounds of piano glissandi and other effects paint a picture of a cat and a mouse running around after each other. As well as this, there is the obvious use of pitch to determine the difference between the lower tones of the cat, and the high-pitched twinkling of the mouse. Moreover, the tonal and rhythmic influences are evident from Copland's use of contrasting colour in pitch, as well as dissonant harmonies and unexpected chordal progressions.