Bach's Bungalow

Started by aquablob, April 06, 2007, 02:42:33 PM

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SimonNZ

Latest episode in the Conversations With Tyler podcast:

Masaaki Suzuki on Interpreting Bach

Pohjolas Daughter

Quote from: SimonNZ on February 29, 2024, 03:19:11 PMLatest episode in the Conversations With Tyler podcast:

Masaaki Suzuki on Interpreting Bach
Thanks for that link.  I hadn't heard about these podcasts before now.

PD
Pohjolas Daughter

Mandryka

#762
Question: Does Opfer have a global structure with a climax etc? The chorales in CU3?

This is from John Butt's book on the Bach passions -- it's not addressing my question, but it prompted my question, which is really about the "finish" of the whole.

Bach's more abstract collections that research a particular issue of compositional theory might seem to presuppose an even earlier mindset (i.e. that predating the era when music served text), which assumed a continuity between the fabric of the music and the structure of the cosmos, and thus the survival of a form of musical thought that was yet to be disenchanted. Nevertheless, most of the pieces in The Art of Fugue or The Musical Offering display some signs of 'finish'.33 This might be a consistency of figuration going beyond the contrapuntal tasks at hand, or a sense of trajectory, tension or culmination – all of which give the pieces a sort of individuality or 'self-consciousness', as a supplement to their didactic purposes.

Butt, John. Bach's Dialogue with Modernity (p. 14)
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

Karl Henning

Karl Henning, Ph.D.
Composer & Clarinetist
Boston MA
http://www.karlhenning.com/
[Matisse] was interested neither in fending off opposition,
nor in competing for the favor of wayward friends.
His only competition was with himself. — Françoise Gilot

Jo498

Quote from: Mandryka on March 17, 2024, 07:55:01 AMQuestion: Does Opfer have a global structure with a climax etc? The chorales in CU3?

This is from John Butt's book on the Bach passions -- it's not addressing my question, but it prompted my question, which is really about the "finish" of the whole.

Bach's more abstract collections that research a particular issue of compositional theory might seem to presuppose an even earlier mindset (i.e. that predating the era when music served text), which assumed a continuity between the fabric of the music and the structure of the cosmos, and thus the survival of a form of musical thought that was yet to be disenchanted. Nevertheless, most of the pieces in The Art of Fugue or The Musical Offering display some signs of 'finish'.33 This might be a consistency of figuration going beyond the contrapuntal tasks at hand, or a sense of trajectory, tension or culmination – all of which give the pieces a sort of individuality or 'self-consciousness', as a supplement to their didactic purposes.

Butt, John. Bach's Dialogue with Modernity (p. 14)
The "finish" of the individual pieces certainly goes beyond mere didactics. But I don't think there is any obvious "arch" within these collections. For the AoF or MO there isn't really an order about everyone agrees anyway, is there?
Or in CÜ 3 the biggest pieces are the frame and today the Eb major P & F are usually played together. Also, some chorale settings (like the "small" manualiter" ones) seem clearly alternatives to each other, to be chosen depending on the organ at hand or the kind of service.

I read once (maybe Martin Geck's Bach book, the only fat one I read) a comparison with baroque showcases or cabinets of curiosities that display special things, jewelry etc but not in a systematic fashion. Of course there is some system in these works like the rising complexity of the fugues but the order is not clearly or uniquely determined by this and they would not have played all of them
anyway.
Tout le malheur des hommes vient d'une seule chose, qui est de ne savoir pas demeurer en repos, dans une chambre.
- Blaise Pascal

Mandryka

#765
Quote from: Jo498 on March 31, 2024, 12:25:41 AMFor the AoF or MO there isn't really an order about everyone agrees anyway, is there?


Well as you can imagine there's a lot of ideas about that. It does seem likely that Bach intended an order, with a four part fugue at the end (It's mentioned in the CPE Bach/Agricola/Mizler obituary.)

Re Opfer, Dantone wtites this

Ursula Kirkendale, argued also by A. Basso in Frau Musika. According to the scholar, a connection can he drawn between the structure of The Musical Offering and the outline of an oration as set down by Quintiliano in his Institutio Oratorio. Following this outline, each part of The Musical Offering corresponds to a rule of rhetoric, that is, to the different functions of an address or narrative. Thus the work would be divided in two parts. The introduction (exordium) would include respectively the Ricercari in 3 and 6 voices, leaving the tasks of narration and argumentation to the several Canons. The conclusion then of Bach's discourse would he the Sonata and the Canon perpemus — the first of these, freed from strict contrapuntal formality, is suited to move the emotions and sentiments; the second piece stands as the definitive, irrefutable demonstration of reason and of intellectual rigour.

and the first edition suggest an order of course -- this again from Dantone

One hundred copies were printed; each consisting of five smaller sheaves or booklets, each of which contained its own numbered pages. In the first such booklet we find the frontispiece with its dedication to Frederick 11 of Prussia, and it is here that the work is presented as an offering to the Sovereign. The second booklet contains the Ricercara 3 and the Canon Perpetuus Super Thema Regium. The third contains diverse Canons; the fourth the Ricercara 6 as well as the Canons for 2 and for 4 voices. Lastly the fifth book contains the Sonata Sopr'il Soggetto Reale and a final Canon perpetuus.
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen

atardecer

#766
𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑷𝒂𝒔𝒔𝒊𝒐 𝒔𝒆𝒄𝒖𝒏𝒅𝒖𝒎 𝑱𝒐𝒂𝒏𝒏𝒆𝒎 or 𝑺𝒕. 𝑱𝒐𝒉𝒏 𝑷𝒂𝒔𝒔𝒊𝒐𝒏 by 𝑱𝒐𝒉𝒂𝒏𝒏 𝑺𝒆𝒃𝒂𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒂𝒏 𝑩𝒂𝒄𝒉 was first performed on this day 7 April 1724, at Good Friday Vespers at the St. Nicholas Church.

J.S. Bach - St. John Passion
Marc Minkowski and Les Musiciens de Louvre
"Science has explained nothing; the more we know the more fantastic the world becomes and the profounder the surrounding darkness." - Aldous Huxley

"Specialized meaninglessness has come to be regarded, in certain circles, as a kind of hallmark of true science." - Aldous Huxley

SonicMan46

The last few days, I've been going through my Well-Tempered Clavier (WTC) recordings on piano and harpsichord - boy, I've been culling these performances for years and now the 5 sets shown below remain (3 on piano, top, and 2 on harpsichord, bottom) - no expert on these works but comments (and many attached reviews) may help others just getting into these iconic compositions to make decisions.

Now there are MANY historic and more recent offerings and lots of personal preferences just reading the many pages of this thread - the reviews might help in choosing?  There are some additional performances in the attachments, CD sets that I've culled out (use to be up to 8 or 9 - many GMGers into these works likely have a dozen or two in their collections?).  Dave :)

P.S. a plug for Colin Booth (his website) - I've liked him as much as Glen Wilson - Booth is also an instrument maker and made his own harpsichord used in these recordings; plus, he ships free - when I purchased his two sets from the website, a sale was on for $20 USD for both.




Mandryka

The two harpsichord ones you kept are favourites of mine too.
Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen