Saturday, February 16, 2019

Mendelssohn's Prelude and Fugue #1 for Piano (seems to inspire the Atkinson work)

The Atkinson Prelude and Fugue reminds me of the Prelude and Fugue in E Minor, Op. 35. #1,in E Minor, by Felix Mendelssohn, which is quite grand.

The piece concludes with a chorale in E Major, a mighty fortress.

I could play this when I was a senior in high school at 17.  It seems like I lost a lot. When I played it.

 I always played the last two measures fortissimo, because the piece seems to demand triumph.

My first piano teacher (who died of colon cancer in my ninth grade at age 57, suddenly) had always called Mendselssohn “happy”.

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Richard Atkinson's own Prelude and Fugue in D Minor, a model of clarity

Richard Atkinson (not on Wikipedia, I think he is a Canadian music professor and composer) offers his own Prelude and Fugue in #1 D Minor for solo piano.

Note the shimmering repeated notes of the Prelude, but it is the formal clarity of the fugue, with clearly marked augmentations and inversions, of the three-voice fugue that is striking.  The performance tends to exaggerate the ritardandos.  The climax at the end, with the touch of dissonance, would be impressive on a large organ.

The picture: I had to share Microsoft’s image of a subway tunnel in Singapore, that reminds me of the “Mobius tunnel” on the space station in my screenplay.  More on that to come.

Thursday, February 07, 2019

Mozart's K 590 Quartet and its dissonances

Some of Mozart’s most “shocking” music occurs in his late chamber music, including the String Quartet #23 in F, K. 590.  Modern and dissonant in all its elegance.
Richard Atkinson analyzes the fugue-like and almost monochromatic exposition of the lively 2/4 finale, with its inversions and perturbations.  In the development, the existential dissonance that results, however comical, becomes almost Schoenbergian.
The comical finale ends quietly and simply.
The Minuet of this quartet is remarkable, too, as I recall. 
The slow movement of the D Major Quintet also has a bizarre passage that is almost dodecaphonic.

Friday, February 01, 2019

Letocart offers an organ fugue in Baroque French style

To open February, here is another composition by Sebastian Letocart, a Fugue in D Minor in French in Baroque French Style.

The fugue is very formal with three voices.
Letocart as has a Fugue in D Minor for harpsichord on YouTube.