Author Topic: The Art of Fugue  (Read 92311 times)

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Offline Marc

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #220 on: August 19, 2011, 01:36:46 PM »
I'll keep some of those names in mind .... Janssen and/or Nikolayeva could be tempting.

Nikolayeva will be wating for me in the library at the end of next week.
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Offline Clever Hans

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #221 on: August 19, 2011, 03:55:43 PM »
Having owned Koroliov´s AoF as well as his contribution to the Haenssler Bach edition (Goldbergs, Inventions and Synphonies, Clavierübungg II, Chromatic phantasy and fugue and Phantasy c-minor) I have not been urged to investigate his Bach-recordings further, and I do not know his WTC. I own the Fischer, Gieseking and 2 x Sviatoslav Richter, and they meet my need for the WTC on piano.

I see. Personally I find Koroliov highly expressive and thoughtful in the WTC which he has been playing for many many years but I appreciate your reservations and recommendations. Koroliov has strengths to discover in Schubert and Chopin Mazurkas.
Richter I think is more virtuoso/pianistic.

For the Art of Fugue, I think Leonhardt's DHM is basically definitive (really there is no one who better captures flexible devotion and expression, and flavor not pretension of austerity in Bach playing. And in his later partitas I really don't care about lack of repeats because he is simply stylistically better than all). But I also like Robert Hill's AOF, which is perhaps easy to enjoy.
Do you think the Rogg performance is balanced well in registrations? Any comments on Rubsam's versions?


 

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #222 on: August 19, 2011, 04:58:36 PM »
[snip]....favorites being.....Janssen.....

Would that be Ivo Janssen? And is the disc below what you're referencing? I've grown mighty fond of this pianist and to read that his Bach is exceptional is good news. Thanks.

« Last Edit: August 22, 2011, 11:08:14 PM by ~ Que ~ »
Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #223 on: August 20, 2011, 12:35:53 AM »
Would that be Ivo Janssen? And is the disc below what you're referencing? I've grown mighty fond of this pianist and to read that his Bach is exceptional is good news. Thanks.


Yes, this is the one. I have not heard other Bach from him than this, and exceptional may be an overstatement. For AoF on piano I still prefer Petermandl (Gramola). But I find Ivo Janssen sufficiently interesting to think of getting his complete Bach box.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2011, 11:09:15 PM by ~ Que ~ »
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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #224 on: August 20, 2011, 01:46:39 AM »
I see. Personally I find Koroliov highly expressive and thoughtful in the WTC which he has been playing for many many years ..

You and Don offer good arguments, however I think I shall opt for Janssen in the first hand.

Quote from: Clever Hans
For the Art of Fugue, I think Leonhardt's DHM is basically definitive (really there is no one who better captures flexible devotion and expression, and flavor not pretension of austerity in Bach playing.

The word "definitive" is not part of my vocabularium in a context of musical interpretation. But Leonhardt´s second AoF recording has IMO got an aura of congeniality about it, and represents the closest, how I think (I may be wrong) Bach himself might have played the work.

Quote from: Clever Hans
Do you think the Rogg performance is balanced well in registrations?

Rogg uses the Walcha organ arrangement (Ed. Peters) with its use of the pedal. While Walcha´s registrations (in his recording) aim at polyphonic transparency - so to say despite the organ, Rogg´s registrations are more organ-idiomatic, aiming at a full organ sound. Personally I prefer Walcha to Rogg, even if Rogg probably is closer to what Bach would have done, if he had used the pedal at all, what I doubt as stated above.

Quote from: Clever Hans
Any comments on Rubsam's versions?

Rübsam´s arrangement of the AoF includes the use of the pedal. Rübsam I (Philips 1977) aims -  like Walcha, at transparency, but his registrations are more organ-idiomatic. The transparency has also something to do with his choice of organ. He plays on a neo baroque Metzler organ, which is less "bass-heavy" but at the same time unfortunately paler and lacking in character compared to Walcha´s Alkmaar organ. Rübsam II (Naxos) is played on an American built modern organ, the sound of which has got some romantic flavour, and he seems to aim at "colourful" registrations, which IMO do not serve the work that well. I refrain from mentioning his relation to tempo (Rübsam II) which indeed is very special and at times hard to stand.
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Offline Clever Hans

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #225 on: August 20, 2011, 04:57:31 AM »
The word "definitive" is not part of my vocabularium in a context of musical interpretation. But Leonhardt´s second AoF recording has IMO got an aura of congeniality about it, and represents the closest, how I think (I may be wrong) Bach himself might have played the work.

I figured you would react to that statement--Leonhardt's Bach playing is my exception--and feel similarly.
Although I think other styles can be justified from a historical perspective, whether purely authentic or not. Specifically Italianate styles, because of the path of influence, even when we can be fairly sure that Bach and nearby musicians would not have performed his works in such a way. Likewise Haydn sonatas perhaps would have been played differently in England than in Austria--but then his sonatas were widely distributed. It follows then that one could look at Bach playing once his works began to be distributed. Or sometimes I think it may be fun in Mozart piano concertos to split the difference between fortepianos of his time and modern grands, and try a later Erard, for example.

Rogg uses the Walcha organ arrangement...

Thanks again for your insights.

Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #226 on: August 20, 2011, 08:02:17 AM »
But Leonhardt´s second AoF recording has IMO got an aura of congeniality about it, and represents the closest, how I think (I may be wrong) Bach himself might have played the work.


I thought you thought that it was intended for organ. Or do you just mean that the articulation, ornamentation, voicing, tempos etc are in line with what we can infer generally about how Bach played things on the harpsichord?
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Offline (: premont :)

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #227 on: August 20, 2011, 12:49:27 PM »
I thought you thought that it was intended for organ.

The AoF was obviously written with the keyboard manualiter in mind - in the first hand the harpsichord, in the second hand the organ manualiter, considering the fact that all of it (except the two mirror fugues) can be played with two hands.

Harpsichord or organ manualiter.

Or do you just mean that the articulation, ornamentation, voicing, tempos etc are in line with what we can infer generally about how Bach played things on the harpsichord?

Yes, even if some of this is conjecture. Leonhardt recorded the AoF twice on harpsichord. What a pity he did not record it on organ too. I can not from the top of my head recall any organist who quite has absorbed the style of his second recording. Rübsam claimed in an interview that he did in his (Rübsam´s) first recording , but I think the closest we get is Tachezi.
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Offline Dancing Divertimentian

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #228 on: August 20, 2011, 08:08:50 PM »
Yes, this is the one. I have not heard other Bach from him than this, and exceptional may be an overstatement. For AoF on piano I still prefer Petermandl (Gramola). But I find Ivo Janssen sufficiently interesting to think of getting his complete Bach box.

Thanks.

He's made quite a splash with me in Brahms and Schumann. His Bach will be wishlisted.


Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #229 on: August 20, 2011, 09:04:51 PM »
Harpsichord or organ manualiter.


Aha.

I think the closest we get is Tachezi.

His AoF is one of the ones I have known for longest and it's one which I enjoy very much.

By coincidence I was listening to Harnoncourt's Musical Offering yesterday and was struck by the beauty of Tachezi's harpsichord. Any suggestions for how I can hear more harpsichord playing like that -- has he recorded other harpsichord music?
« Last Edit: August 21, 2011, 01:06:37 AM by Mandryka »
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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #230 on: August 21, 2011, 09:56:18 AM »

His [Tachezi´s] AoF is one of the ones I have known for longest and it's one which I enjoy very much.

By coincidence I was listening to Harnoncourt's Musical Offering yesterday and was struck by the beauty of Tachezi's harpsichord. Any suggestions for how I can hear more harpsichord playing like that -- has he recorded other harpsichord music?

Tachezi contributed to a lot of the Concentus Musicus recordings as continuo player, and even as a soloist (f.i. in Händel´s organ concertos and in Bach´s d-minor harpsichord concerto BWV 1052), but he made only a few solo recordings and preferably on organ. Other than his solo harpsichord in the Musical Offering I only know of his solo harpsichord contribution to Hermann Scherchen´s Art of Fugue for Westminster (ca.1964), Tachezi playing the four Canons. His playing in these is (IIRC -parted with the recording -LP- many years ago) a bit stiff, and he was not well served by the engineer. He also plays cembalo obligato on Alice Harnoncourt´s recording of the Bach violin/harpsichord sonatas and on Nicolaus Harnoncourts recording of the viola da gamba/harpsichord sonatas.

On organ he has recorded two Bach LPs (later released on CD) for Telefunken in 1985 on the G. Silbermann organ of the castle church in Dresden. His playing on these is very informed and commited and reminds much of Anton Heiller and is equally impressive.

Concerning the instrument he uses in the Musical Offering my item of the CD does not tell, but a GMG member some time ago wrote, that it is an instrument by Martin Skowroneck. I think the soft and beautiful sound of this instrument tells that it must be the same instrument he uses in the BWV 1052 (Skowroneck after Italian models ca. 1700) in contrast to the Skowroneck after J.D. Dulcken, which Leonhardt used for many of his recordings (e.g. AoF II and WTC book II), and which has got a more crisp sound.

Tachezi´s AoF was recorded ca.1977 on a neobaroque rather small Ahrend organ (22 stops on two manuals and pedal). He uses the pedal in all Contrapuncti except II, III, VIII, IX and of course the two part Canons, but discretely, and the Pedal Subbass 16´ of this organ is a soft register, which does not spoil the balance that much. On the other hand the HW Oktave 2 and Mixtur as well as the RP Scharf are very shrill, and he uses one or more of these in Cpt. VI, VIII, IX, X and XI and also in the inversed Canon. The sound of these stops is almost intolerably incisive in the long run. But I will not blame Tachezi, as close miking may be the cause. In Cpt. VIII, X and XI there are some surprisingly "oldfashioned" and fussy changes of registration, rather in contrast to his informed style elsewhere. Especially his articulation is very informed and considered even for the time of the recording, similar to Leonhardt . After all Tachezi was born in 1930 and belongs to the first generation of the "explicit" HIP organists (along with Heiller, Alain and Forsblom).

I listened to these four CDs (Opfer, AoF and the two organ CDs) to day, and there is certainly much to enjoy from this great artist, which ought to have recorded more Bach on organ as well as on harpsichord. A pity he was not born twenty years later.
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Offline Opus106

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #231 on: August 21, 2011, 10:09:05 AM »
By coincidence I was listening to Harnoncourt's Musical Offering yesterday and was struck by the beauty of Tachezi's harpsichord. Any suggestions for how I can hear more harpsichord playing like that -- has he recorded other harpsichord music?

Concerning the instrument he uses in the Musical Offering my item of the CD does not tell, but a GMG member some time ago wrote, that it is an instrument by Martin Skowroneck.

Indeed. Thanks to Scarpia, we know that it's one from 1720. :)


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Offline Marc

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #232 on: August 21, 2011, 10:12:55 AM »
Harpsichord or organ manualiter.

Yes, even if some of this is conjecture. Leonhardt recorded the AoF twice on harpsichord. What a pity he did not record it on organ too. I can not from the top of my head recall any organist who quite has absorbed the style of his second recording. Rübsam claimed in an interview that he did in his (Rübsam´s) first recording , but I think the closest we get is Tachezi.

Nice to see Tachezi mentioned.
At first, I got me another Bach organ disc from him, and one with Mozart, but he never made my day.
So it took me some time to get tempted and buy his KdF .... and guess what: I think it's a very good one! :)
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Offline (: premont :)

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #233 on: August 21, 2011, 10:18:40 AM »
Indeed. Thanks to Scarpia, we know that it's one from 1720. :)

It is nevertheless obviously the same instrument whether it is ca 1700 or 1720 (typo in one of the booklets?)
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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #234 on: August 21, 2011, 10:21:30 AM »
Nice to see Tachezi mentioned.
At first, I got me another Bach organ disc from him,  but he never made my day.

Which one? Vol I (BWV 565 et c.) or Vol. II (BWV 564 et c.?)

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Offline Marc

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #235 on: August 21, 2011, 10:31:55 AM »
Which one? Vol I (BWV 565 et c.) or Vol. II (BWV 564 et c.?)

Probably a sampler:



BWV 565, 552, 542, 582 and 564.
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Offline Marc

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #236 on: August 21, 2011, 10:56:47 AM »
Probably a sampler:



BWV 565, 552, 542, 582 and 564.

Had a listen to BWV 542 before good night and well, it's not bad at all.
I guess I wasn't happy with the rather diffuse sound quality. And I still wished for a better recording.
The organ itself is OK btw: it's the Silbermann of the Dresdner Hofkirche.

Well, here's member Marc sayin' good night to yez all, and God bless yez.
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Offline (: premont :)

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #237 on: August 21, 2011, 11:21:41 AM »
Had a listen to BWV 542 before good night and well, it's not bad at all.
I guess I wasn't happy with the rather diffuse sound quality. And I still wished for a better recording.

Yes, unfortunately the sound is rather reverberant. However my primary concern was Tachezi´s interpretation.
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #238 on: August 22, 2011, 10:45:29 AM »
Other than his [Tachezi's]  solo harpsichord in the Musical Offering I only know of his solo harpsichord contribution to Hermann Scherchen´s Art of Fugue for Westminster (ca.1964), Tachezi playing the four Canons. His playing in these is (IIRC -parted with the recording -LP- many years ago) a bit stiff, and he was not well served by the engineer.

I played the harpsichord sections of the recording today. You know, I never knew it was him but now that I do know, the  similarities between his playing there and on Opfer are clear, especially in the first canon he plays. I can easily let you have the mp3s if you want them.

« Last Edit: August 22, 2011, 10:55:25 AM by Mandryka »
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Re: The Art of Fugue
« Reply #239 on: August 22, 2011, 12:05:16 PM »
I can easily let you have the mp3s if you want them.

That would be great.  :)
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