At the age of ten José Vianna da Motta composed O Acrobata, Fantasy op. 25 in F major which is classed with his childhood works written between 1873 and 1883. The analysis of the manuscript reveals that the opus number 25 was a correction made to the opus number 23.
Among the childhood works we can identify some common pianistic traits that reflect the technical research to which Vianna da Motta was dedicated and the musical trends that were influencing him. For example, the theme b2 (cf. structural scheme below) has many similarities with the theme b of the piece Purificação, Polka op. 18 (cf. b. 33). Furthermore, the compositional material used in the final section is partly present in the
conclusion of the piece A Infância, Polka op. 24. Lastly, the harmonic progression of type I-♭VI present between the Introduction and a is perhaps the most characteristic element of Vianna da Motta's childhood works. There are several examples in works such as Amor Filial: Waltz op. 16; Purificação: Polka op. 18; Volúvel: Waltz op. 19; Victória!!: March op. 23; A Infância: Polka op. 24; Polaca, op. 37; Meditação, op. 51 no. 1.
Regarding the work on the compositional material of O Acrobata, Fantasy op. 25, it is worth noting the variations on the decoration of themes b1 and b2 made in different tones. The complexity of the harmonic progression (which can be observed by the analysis of the structural scheme) contrasts with the other Vianna da Motta childhood pieces, most of which end with the initial tone.
João Costa Ferreira