Category Archives: Johann Sebastian Bach

Playing a Bach Invention: Say what you mean, and mean what HE said

My latest awakening occurred during a piano lesson last night with a student who loves Bach and nearly dotes upon his compositions exclusively. And that’s fine with me who’s a companion traveler sharing a comparable love for the composer and … Continue reading

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First Love Bach Fugue in F minor, BWV 881

What a divine pairing from J.S. Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 2! The ethereal, “sighing” Prelude is joined by a somber, though monumental Fugue in three voices. The Subject with its characteristic three-8th note repetitions followed by two-16ths, meanders in stepwise … Continue reading

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J.S. Bach’s ethereal Prelude in F minor, BWV 881 (contour and voices)

A kindred musician friend and Baroque scholar residing on the East Coast tipped me off that my “first love” reading of Bach’s Prelude in F minor a few months back, was just the very top layer of a more in … Continue reading

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Studying J.S. Bach: What many piano students overlook

In the course of learning keyboard works by J.S. Bach, many students are riveted to the top most line, often ignoring alto, tenor and bass voices. The Prelude in F minor, BWV 881, is a case in point. While sobbing … Continue reading

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Playing J.S. Bach with an awareness of Harmonic Rhythm

In working through Bach’s two-part Invention No. 13 in A minor, an adult student and I explored harmonic resolutions and their influence on phrasing. *** While many pupils expect cadences to be predictable resting points where pianists typically taper a … Continue reading

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Teaching J.S. Bach

As mentors immersed in a two-way sharing process with students, we’re grateful for opportunities to delve deeply into the masterworks. One companion traveler of mine dotes exclusively on the music of J.S. Bach, preferring this singular journey to any other. … Continue reading

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Me, My Neighbors and J.S. Bach

I spent two full nights with J.S.B., recording at ungodly hours, deleting a lion’s share of playings, worrying about my neighbors’ patience threshold. With a “runner’s high,” equivalent of being in the zone, I just couldn’t let go of the … Continue reading

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