The F sharp minor Nocturne is melancholic but not totally without hope. The flowing outer sections are contrasted by a recitative-like section in which the composer wanted the first two chords to sound like an order from a tyrant, and the answer begging for mercy. The most expressive part of this piece is the final page where the same descending chromatic line appears twice, harmonized differently. The set is dedicated to Mlle Laure Duperré, a student of Chopin.
from notes by Angela Hewitt © 2004