J.S. Bach's sonatas and partitas for solo violin have been central to the violin repertoire since the mid-18th century. This engaging introduction to these works is the first comprehensive exploration of their place within Bach's music, focusing on their structural and stylistic features as they have been perceived since their creation. Combining an analytical study, a historical guide, and an insightful introduction to Bach's style, this book will help violinists, scholars, and other listeners develop a deeper personal involvement with many aspects of these wonderful pieces.
One of the jewels in the crown of Johann Sebastian Bach's sacred music is its use of astonishingly subtle and complex allegorical and representational devices. But when similar devices appear in the context of one of Bach's untexted, secular, instrumental collections such as the Six Solos (sonatas and partitas) for violin, the question arises whether he might be intending to embed discernible theological significances there as well, thus infusing the secular with the sacred. Such designs would be reasonably plausible within Bach's musical, cultural, and religious context. Shute carefully investigates the extent to which musical features of the Six Solos that seem to invite theological parallels might indeed have been intended to do so. Although the precise extent of Bach's intentions cannot be ascertained with certainty, the degree of correlation among strong potential signifiers would seem to suggest that they, and many other features of the Six Solos, are best explained as the product of extensive theological-allegorical designs on Bach's part, like those evident in his texted vocal music. ""Bach's music never ceases to astonish. In this fascinating study, Shute investigates the possibility that Bach's six works for unaccompanied violin might carry meaning that can plausibly be construed as asymbolum, a creed of his Lutheran faith expressed in tones alone. Assiduously avoiding the far-fetched methodologies and unfettered subjectivity that have marred some previous studies of this kind, he arrives at interpretations that are much more credible but no less astonishing. A major achievement!"" --Calvin R. Stapert, Professor of Music Emeritus, Calvin College; author ofMy Only Comfort: Death, Deliverance, and Discipleship in the Music of Bach ""Dr. Shute's heart for discovery and driving intellectual curiosity are on display here in this welcome volume. As a pedagogue, performer, and scholar, he shares his quest for meaning in music with us generously. Passionate and thoughtful, this engaging examination will invite you to ask questions and propel you into further study of Bach's music, of course, and interestingly enough, his life."" --Benjamin Harding, Dean, School of Music, Cairn University Benjamin J. Shute is active as a violinist on modern and period instruments, having served as a concertmaster of the Boston Chamber Orchestra and as a faculty member at Dickinson College and Cairn University, where he currently teaches. He is also the author of forthcoming critical reconstructions of Bach's lost D-minor violin concerto (BWV 1052R) and incompletely surviving D-major Sinfonia (BWV 1045)."
One of the jewels in the crown of Johann Sebastian Bach's sacred music is its use of astonishingly subtle and complex allegorical and representational devices. But when similar devices appear in the context of one of Bach's untexted, secular, instrumental collections such as the Six Solos (sonatas and partitas) for violin, the question arises whether he might be intending to embed discernible theological significances there as well, thus infusing the secular with the sacred. Such designs would be reasonably plausible within Bach's musical, cultural, and religious context. Shute carefully investigates the extent to which musical features of the Six Solos that seem to invite theological parallels might indeed have been intended to do so. Although the precise extent of Bach's intentions cannot be ascertained with certainty, the degree of correlation among strong potential signifiers would seem to suggest that they, and many other features of the Six Solos, are best explained as the product of extensive theological-allegorical designs on Bach's part, like those evident in his texted vocal music.
Reprinted from the renowned Bach-Gesellschaft edition, this work features the complete Sonatas and Partitas for Unaccompanied Violin and the six Sonatas for Violin and Clavier. The music has been reproduced in a size large enough to read easily, with large noteheads, wide margins for notes, and lay-flat pages.
The violinist Jascha Heifetz (1901-1987) is considered among the most influential performers in history and still maintains a strong following among violinists around the world. Dario Sarlo contributes significantly to the growing field of analytical research into recordings and the history of performance style. Focussing on Heifetz and his under-acknowledged but extensive performing relationship with the Bach solo violin works (BWV 1001-1006), Sarlo examines one of the most successful performing musicians of the twentieth century along with some of the most frequently performed works of the violin literature. The book proposes a comprehensive method for analysing and interpreting the legacies of prominent historical performers in the wider context of their particular performance traditions. The study outlines this research framework and addresses how it can be transferred to related studies of other performers. By building up a comprehensive understanding of multiple individual performance styles, it will become possible to gain deeper insight into how performance style develops over time. The investigation is based upon eighteen months of archival research in the Library of Congress’s extensive Jascha Heifetz Collection. It draws on numerous methods to examine what and how Heifetz played, why he played that way, and how that way of playing compares to other performers. The book offers much insight into the ’music industry’ between 1915 and 1975, including touring, programming, audiences, popular and professional reception and recording. The study concludes with a discussion of Heifetz’s unique performer profile in the context of violin performance history.
This book contains the first three of J.S. Bach's solo violin Sonatas and Partitas arranged for mandolin. The goal of the material is to make learning these challenging pieces easier. Mandolin tablature is included throughout the book. Mandolinists who have little or no experience reading standard notation will find this to be an essential learning tool. For good reason, there has been widespread interest in learning these pieces in the mandolin community. The pieces were originally written for violin. As a result, Bach's use of string crossing patterns and open-string pedals work brilliantly on the mandolin. Also, as solo works they are a useful addition to anyone's performing repertoire. Lastly, even if never performed, learning all or some of these is wonderful for building mandolin technique. Violinists often say that if you can play the Bach Solo Sonatas and Partitas you can play anything-the same is certainly true for mandolinists
The complete six Sonatas and Partitas for solo Violin (BWV 1001-1006) by Johann Sebastian Bach transcribed for guitar in standard notation and tablature. Composed between 1714 and 1720 but not published until 1802, Bach's Sonatas and Partitas are an essential part of the violin repertoire, and they are frequently performed and recorded. The pieces often served as archetypes for solo violin pieces by later generations of composers. Sonata No.1 in G minor BWV 1001 Partita No.1 in B minor BWV 1002 Sonata No.2 in A minor BWV 1003 Partita No.2 in D minor BWV 1004 Sonata No.3 in C major BWV 1005 Partita No.3 in E major BWV 1006
Known around the world for his advocacy of early historical performance and as a skilled violin performer and pedagogue, Stanley Ritchie has developed a technical guide to the interpretation and performance of J. S. Bach's enigmatic sonatas and partitas for solo violin. Unlike typical Baroque compositions, Bach's six solos are uniquely free of accompaniment. To add depth and texture to the pieces, Bach incorporated various techniques to bring out a multitude of voices from four strings and one bow, including arpeggios across strings, multiple stopping, opposing tonal ranges, and deft bowing. Published in 1802, over 80 years after its completion in 1720, Bach's manuscript is without expression marks, leaving the performer to freely interpret the dynamics, fingering, bowings, and articulations. Marshaling a lifetime of experience, Stanley Ritchie provides violinists with deep insights into the interpretation and technicalities at the heart of these challenging pieces.
This pioneering book by an acclaimed expert is the first to discuss all of Bach's unaccompanied pieces in one volume, including an examination of crucial issues of style and composition type and the options open to interpretation and performance. David Ledbetter, a leading expert on Bach, provides the historical background to Bach's instrumental works, as well as detailed commentaries on each work. Ledbetter argues that Bach's unaccompanied works--the six suites for solo cello, six sonatas and partitas for solo violin, seven works for lute, and the suite for solo flute--should be considered together to enable one piece to elucidate another. This illuminating and significant book is essential for professionals, performers, students, or anybody who wishes to learn more about Bach's music.
It is one of Josef Joachim’s great merits, not only to have introduced the following sonatas of Johann Sebastian Bach into the Concert-Hall, but also to have made them loved by the great public. They were almost unknown before Joachim played them with his grand art of interpretation, and brought out all the beauties of this magnificent music. Some parts of these sonatas had been played in public by certain violinists before Joachim’s time, but as the spirit and the technique of these works were quite strange to the performers, the interpretation made a ridiculous impression on the audience. Any success was made quite impossible on account of the want of knowledge in the performers. Then came Joachim and his rendering was a revelation. How be played, and interpreted these sonatas is so well-known, that it is not necessary to mention it. When I completed my studies at the Berliner Hochschule under Joachim’s direction, the study of these sonatas formed one of the most important parts of his teaching. Joachim used the very excellent edition by Ferdinand David, based on Bach’s manuscript, to be found in the Royal Library in Berlin. All the same Joachim changed a great deal in this edition, with regard to the manner of playing, bowing, fingering and marks of interpretation, and I kept to all the alterations made by him. I very often had the opportunity of hearing Joachim play these works at concerts as well as during his classes, and so I was able to observe the fineness of his interpretation down to the smallest detail. As I am publishing the standard works of violin literature in connection with my own teaching, it was a special pleasure to me to revise these Sonatas — which I consider one of the most important works written for the violin — in such a manner, that no doubt may be left as to the best and easiest way of mastering the great and unusual difficulties which they contain. I hope to show by this to all young violin-artists, to whom the study of the following sonatas cannot be too strongly recommended — a sure way to a really perfect and beautiful rendering of the same.
This book and accompanying audio make one of J.S. Bach's most enduring and fascinating instrumental works accessible to mandolin players: the Prelude in E Major from his solo sonata in E major for violin. The book and audio include fingerings, tablature and a slow performance of the piece. These materials are intended to make learning the virtuosic piece an attainable task. In recent years musicians outside of the classical genre have been learning and performing this work with regularity. Chris Thile, Bela Fleck and Mark O'Connor are notableexamples. Their interest is in no doubt due to a desire to strengthen theirmusicianship as well as to add one of the great show-stopping solo pieces of alltime to their shows. Access to online audio.
Notation in Johannes Brahms's sonata scores tells violinists and pianists far more than merely what pitches to play and how long to play them--if read carefully, these scores reveal an immense amount of expression, both of musical and human essences. Joel Lester's Brahms's Violin Sonatas magnifies key passages from these scores, revealing in clear and accessible language how the composer built his themes and musical narratives and how, ultimately, Brahms's music came to sound Brahmsian. Through close readings and annotated musical examples, Brahms's Violin Sonatas guides practitioners to read scores with care and to develop their own informed interpretation of the pieces, eschewing the notion of a single "correct" interpretation of the historical score. By exploring not only the sonatas' musical elements, but also their relationship to important events in the composer's life, Lester shows how subtle components can communicate the gestures, moods, personalities, and emotions that make Brahms's music so compelling. A companion volume to the author's award-winning 1999 study Bach's Works for Solo Violin: Style, Structure, and Performance (OUP), Brahms's Violin Sonatas is a clear and practical guide to understanding and performing Brahms's music in the present.