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Fantasia super "Valet will ich dir geben", BWV 736

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Uploaded by: Agnus_Dei (04/01/15)
Composer: Bach, J. S.
Sample Producer: Lavender Audio
Sample Set: Hereford Cathedral Willis Organ
Software: Hauptwerk IV
Genre: Baroque
This piece SHOULD have been uploaded for Palm Sunday, but I just couldn't get it done in time! Sorry..

The Fantasia on Valet will ich dir geben, BWV 736, (Farewell will I give you), is an alternative working of the chorale, with the melody in the pedals, and an antiphonal triple rhythm above. As with so much of Bach's organ music, it is thought to belong to his Weimar period.

This melody is so inseparably joined to the text, "All glory, laud, and honor", that it seems hard to believe that this music was apparently NOT linked to that text!

I've done two versions of this piece. They are very different. This one would be the "incorrect" version.

I believe that this is the way you'd here this piece played at an English cathedral Palm Sunday service during the time period of the 1930s through the 1960s or thereabouts.

It was at that point that these performances were "refined" (or watered down...), and a more "correct" approach would have been used.

However, it is only in a performance such as this that the full resources of the grand cathedral organs can be heard! Is it incorrect? Absolutely! Is it wrong? It doesn't SOUND so - at least to me... ;-)

You hear it played on the full plenum of the Great with all the mixtures, coupled to the full Swell (closed) at 8' & 4', and the full Choir at 8', and the Solo Tromba (closed) at 8' & 4'. The Pedal is ABSOLUTELY full throughout. You'll hear the Great reeds added successively at 8', then 4', then 16'.

There is a liberal use of the Swell box throughout. I used it to shape the line and to add to the excitement. At the very end the Solo box opens, and you CAN hear the Tromba, now coulpled at 16', 8', and 4' come through.

I hadn't played this piece in about 10-15 years, but this was the way that I used to play Bach. Certainly it was the way I played it during my time as Assistant Organist of Ripon Cathedral.

Which version do you prefer?!? :-)
Performance: Live
Recorded in: Stereo
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