The Art of Fugue: Bach Fugues for Keyboard, 1715-1750

By Joseph Kerman

Fugue for J. S. Bach was once a usual language; he wrote fugues in organ toccatas and voluntaries, in plenty and motets, in orchestral and chamber song, or even in his sonatas for violin solo. The extra intimate fugues he wrote for keyboard are one of the maximum, so much influential, and best-loved works in all of Western song. they've got lengthy been the root of the keyboard repertory, performed by way of starting scholars and world-famous virtuosi alike. In a chain of elegantly written essays, eminent musicologist Joseph Kerman discusses his favourite Bach keyboard fugues—some of them one of the best-known fugues and others less established. Kerman skillfully, every now and then playfully, finds the internal workings of those items, linking the shape of the fugues with their many various characters and expressive characteristics, and illuminating what makes them rather appealing, robust, and moving.

These witty, insightful items, addressed to musical amateurs in addition to to experts and scholars, are superbly augmented through a CD with new performances made in particular for this quantity. as well as the total ratings for all of the tune mentioned within the publication, the CD gains Karen Rosenak, piano, enjoying preludes and fugues from TheWell-Tempered Clavier—C significant, e-book 1; and B significant, booklet 2—and recordings by way of Davitt Moroney of the Fughetta in C significant, BWV 952, on clavichord; the Fugue on "Jesus Christus unser Heiland," BWV 689, on organ; and the fable and Fugue in A Minor, BWV 904, on harpsichord.

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Dreyfus, pp. 153–55 bankruptcy 2. Fugue in C Minor via David Schulenberg within the Keyboard tune of J. S. Bach . . . Schulenberg, pp. 170–71 while Bullivant reaches the bankruptcy on fugal shape . . . Bullivant, p. 148 149 150 / Notes Bullivant doesn't fail to notice “points of curiosity” . . . Bullivant, p. eighty four Hermann Keller noted the music’s “easy comprehensibility” . . . Keller, p. fifty four bankruptcy four. Fugue in C-sharp Minor Eric Lewin Altschuler’s alternatives for the head Ten Fugues . . . Altschuler, p. sixty seven “Nothing extra is heard of this [countersubject],” says Tovey .

He provides the remainder of it virtually covertly, on a susceptible beat (example 18b), even though the fabric earnings confidence (and credibility as a countersubject) inasmuch because the motif now appears to be like as a series drawn out as a melodic line in one voice, instead of shared among imitating voices. Bar forty three: a brand new arpeggio determine eases the motif over onto the robust beat; as occurs nearly sometimes during this tune, one inspiration flows into one other seamlessly and with the best eloquence (example 18c). Bars 44–47: Fugue 2 is laid out symmetrically or systematically, a minimum of for some time, with episodes of an identical type after the first and moment pairs of entries (though the latter is in 3 components and is prolonged) [bars 41–43, 44–47].

And this meandering look for wealthy sonorities conceals (or embraces) a practical motivic technique. The counterpoint in the beginning formulates the most stretto that may be utilized in the double fugue— a primitive motif related to an upward bounce of a fourth in shut stretto on the decrease fourth or top fifth [bars 10, 11–12, 16–17]. The bass expands this motif into foreshadowings of the most fugue topic [bars 12–13, 16–17, 18–20]. either toccata fragments come to a similar formal part cadence at the dominant, B∫.

F. Dickinson in his e-book Bach’s Fugal Works. What Dickinson turns out to were alluding to in his gnomic approach (but no one else talks approximately it in any respect) used to be the surprisingly powerful segmentation of this track into lengthy parallel words. words of almost a similar size, demarcated by means of very sonorous cadences, all commence within the related method, with heavily knit fourpart expositions of the topic. previous the outlet, those expositions seventy five 76 / Fugue in E significant word quantity variety of bars 1 nine Exposition → part cadence 2 eight Stretto 1 → cadence in C-sharp minor (vi) three eight Stretto 2 → cadence in F-sharp minor (ii) four thirteen (dominant of E: I) Stretto three (varied topic) prime with no powerful cadence to Stretto four (diminished topic) + extra entries → five cadence in G-sharp minor (iii) Stretto five: go back of stretto 1 + additional bass access nine → final cadence in E (I) are pressed into numerous strettos; after a time the wealthy cadences start to echo each other, just like the gradual chime of the large gong in a gamelan.

One hundred forty 35 bars 100–101. diminution aid of forever values of a subject matter or motif, often by means of part: p. seventy nine 23 bars 26–29. unfastened diminution: p. eighty 23 bars three, 35. dominant fifth scale measure (5) or the triad equipped on it (V or v). double fugue fugue with topics, offered instantaneously within the starting exposition: p. sixty eight 20 (or: awarded in separate expositions, then later combined). doubling addition to a melodic line of one other line in one other voice in 3rds or 6ths above or lower than that keeps the period all through: p.

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