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Program Music Deep Dive

Program Music Deep Dive


During this activity, you’ll dive deeper into Vivaldi’s Winter from The Four Seasons.

  • Read the poem this piece is based on.

I. Allegro non molto–
Frozen and trembling in the icy snow,
In the severe blast of the horrible wind,
As we run, we constantly stamp our feet,
And our teeth chatter in the cold.
II. Largo–
To spend happy and quiet days near the fire,
While, outside, the rain soaks hundreds.
III. Allegro–
We walk on the ice with slow steps,
And tread carefully, for fear of falling.
Symphony, If we go quickly, we slip and fall to the ground.
Again we run on the ice,
Until it cracks and opens.
We hear, from closed doors,
Sirocco, Boreas, and all the winds in battle.
This is winter, but it brings joy.


  • Discuss – Based on the poem, what do you think the music will sound like?
  • Split the poem out into its different sections/thematic ideas. For example, using the poem above, the first two sections might be “Frozen and trembling in snow” and “Running through snow.”
  • Map out what you expect to hear in each section of the music on the music mind map worksheet.
    • In the purple circles, students will write the different sections they identified from bullet one.
    • Then they’ll work their way to the outer circles and describe what is happening with each of those musical elements.

  • Listen to the piece and read the simplified poem as it corresponds to the music:
  • Option: After each section, compare how the music sounded with how you thought it was going to sound. You can either do this immediately upon first listen or listen once through and do this on a second listen through

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