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Fughetta in C minor

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Playing Johann Gottlob Töpfer and Bach's Passacaglia

Playing Johann Gottlob Töpfer and Bach's PassacagliaBy Dr. Wolfram SyréJohann Gottlob Töpfer was ...

Uploaded by: Andrew Grahame (04/24/17)
Composer: Johann Krieger (1651 - 1735)
Sample Producer: OrganART Media
Sample Set: 2012 Metzler, Poblet Abbey, Spain
Software: Hauptwerk
Genre: Baroque
Description:
Today’s lesson is on pages 8 and 9 of “The Progressive Organist – Book 1” edited by C. H. Trevor – the Fughetta in C minor by Johann Krieger (1651 – 1735).

To begin, I’ve looked at how to phrase the fugue subject. If it’s played legato throughout, especially in a wet acoustic, the result is turgid and lifeless. The audio track begins with the main and secondary thematic figures – first played legato, then with my own phrasing/detaching. Once decided, mark the phrasing/detaching throughout and be consistent when practising. Mark fingering and pedalling as needed and stick to it too.

At first, don’t spend too much time playing right through. Isolate short sections, especially harder spots, and work on them first.

In this piece the last few bars are the trickiest. Entries come quickly in different parts, the alto part is shared between the hands, and the detaching occurs on different beats in each part. The next section of the audio file shows just these few bars being practised twice – the second time at a slightly faster tempo. MIDI file for this section is included.

The registration used so far is quiet, clear and basic – flute 8 plus Octave 4 on HW with matching/balancing independent pedal.

Next, go right through on the quiet, clear registration. Don’t let any detail pass. If something slips up, do that bit again and again until it's fluent. When finally playing through, keep initially to the practice registration at a moderate tempo.

The next section on the audio track is the entire work played right through at a practising tempo on the practising registration. Make sure all details are clear and secure before speeding up and reaching for mixtures, reeds and so on.

Now it’s time to bring up the tempo to performance speed, adding the performance registration. The audio file concludes with this version, and the MIDI file of this section is included.

These techniques can be applied to any work you are learning.
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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