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e-book Prelude No. 1 in D-flat major

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Insurrection Piano Sonata No. Impossible - Rogue Nation Symphony No. Apocalypse Zardoz Symphony No. The Rise of Thadland Carmen: Services below require separate subscription. It is taken from a set of 24 preludes one for each of the 12 major keys and one for each of the 12 minor keys. A musical prelude is often an introductory piece but not in this case.

Prelude, Op. 28, No. 15 (Chopin)

The short pieces are self-contained and stand-alone. It is often said that this refers to the persistent repeated notes which sound like rain falling. During much of the 20th century it was assumed that Bach wanted equal temperament , which had been described by theorists and musicians for at least a century before Bach's birth.

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This represents an equation of the most tonally remote enharmonic keys where the flat and sharp arms of the circle of fifths cross each other opposite to C major. Any performance of this pair would have required both of these enharmonic keys to sound identically tuned, thus implying equal temperament in the one pair, as the entire work implies as a whole.

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However, research has continued into various unequal systems contemporary with Bach's career. Accounts of Bach's own tuning practice are few and inexact. The three most cited sources are Forkel , Bach's first biographer ; Friedrich Wilhelm Marpurg , who received information from Bach's sons and pupils; and Johann Kirnberger , one of those pupils.


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Forkel reports that Bach tuned his own harpsichords and clavichords and found other people's tunings unsatisfactory; his own allowed him to play in all keys and to modulate into distant keys almost without the listeners noticing it. Marpurg and Kirnberger, in the course of a heated debate, appear to agree that Bach required all the major thirds to be sharper than pure—which is in any case virtually a prerequisite for any temperament to be good in all keys.

Johann Georg Neidhardt, writing in and , described a range of unequal and near-equal temperaments as well as equal temperament itself , which can be successfully used to perform some of Bach's music, and were later praised by some of Bach's pupils and associates. Bach's son Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach himself published a rather vague tuning method which was close to but still not equal temperament: Since there have been many other proposals and many performances of the work in different and unequal tunings, some derived from historical sources, some by modern authors.

Whatever their provenances, these schemes all promote the existence of subtly different musical characters in different keys, due to the sizes of their intervals. However, they disagree as to which key receives which character:. More recently there has been a series of proposals of temperaments derived from the handwritten pattern of loops on Bach's title page.

The Well-Tempered Clavier - Wikipedia

These loops though truncated by a later clipping of the page can be seen at the top of the title page image at the beginning of the article. Nevertheless, some musicologists say it is insufficiently proven that Bach's looped drawing signifies anything reliable about a tuning method. Bach may have tuned differently per occasion, or per composition, throughout his career. Each Prelude is followed by a Fugue in the same key.

In each book the first Prelude and Fugue is in C major , followed by a Prelude and Fugue in its parallel minor key C minor. Then all keys, each major key followed by its parallel minor key, are followed through, each time moving up a half tone: The first book of the Well-Tempered Clavier was composed in the early s, with Bach's autograph dated Apart from the early versions of several preludes included in W. Zum Nutzen und Gebrauch der Lehrbegierigen Musicalischen Jugend, als auch derer in diesem studio schon habil seyenden besonderem Zeitvertreib auffgesetzet und verfertiget von Johann Sebastian Bach.

The well-tempered Clavier, or Preludes and Fugues through all the tones and semitones, both as regards the tertiam majorem or Ut Re Mi [i.


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  • For the profit and use of the studious musical young, and also for the special diversion of those who are already skilful in this study, composed and made by Johann Sebastian Bach, for the time being Capellmeister and Director of the Chamber-music of the Prince of Anhalt-Cothen. In the year The two major primary sources for this collection of Preludes and Fugues are the "London Original" LO manuscript, dated between and , with scribes including Bach, his wife Anna Magdalena and his oldest son Wilhelm Friedeman, which is the basis for Version A of WTC II , [29] and for Version B, that is the version published by the 19th-century Bach-Gesellschaft , a copy primarily written by Johann Christoph Altnickol Bach's son-in-law , with some corrections by Bach, and later also by Altnickol and others.

    Prelude as a theme with variations. Fugue in three voices. Musically, the structural regularities of the Well-Tempered Clavier encompass an extraordinarily wide range of styles, more so than most pieces in the literature. The preludes are also notable for their odd or irregular numbers of measures, in terms of both the phrases and the total number of measures in a given prelude.

    Each fugue is marked with the number of voices, from two to five. Most are three- and four-voiced fugues, and there are only two five-voiced fugues BWV and , and one two-voiced fugue BWV The fugues employ a full range of contrapuntal devices fugal exposition, thematic inversion, stretto , etc. Several attempts have been made to analyse the motivic connections between each prelude and fugue, [31] — most notably Wilhelm Werker [32] and Johann Nepomuk David [33] The most direct motivic reference appears in the B major set from Book 1, in which the fugue subject uses the first four notes of the prelude, in the same metric position but at half speed.