About this work
Chopin wrote more works by far in the Mazurka genre, than in any other -- over 50. The mazurka is a dance form that came from Mazovia, located near Warsaw. It, like the Polonaise, had spread from the villages to the cities, not only in Poland but throughout Europe, reaching Paris and London. It is an attractive, lively dance in triple time.
The Mazurka No. 2 is one of the most Polish-sounding of the four that comprise the Op. 6 set. The tempo is leisurely but still lively, the main theme demure, at times even coquettish in its rhythmic sensuality. There is a mood of both gaiety and intimacy in this cleverly crafted, colorful dance. What is remarkable about this piece is that it was written when the composer was only 20 -- remarkable because it is already stylistically pure Chopin.
This mazurka lasts about three minutes in a typical performance and is one of the finest in the entire lot. In fact, it can be ranked among Chopin's best short keyboard compositions.