Thursday, November 15, 2007

Bach for the third violins (Threolas)

The third violins who attended rehearsal on Monday were given a hand
written part for the Bach fugue.
Bach meant to write another part it seems but passed the job on to
Alison's husband Alasdair. I've written it out in Finale Print Music
and I think it's correct. Sunday should see a test drive and I'll run
off copies for everyone and perhaps Heather is going to publish it on
the site as a JPEG.

However, The last 2 bars are missing from my copy. The stalks are
visible and I am assuming the notes are
Bar 1 half note followed by 4 eighth notes Bar 2 One whole note.
Can anyone tell me the pitch of these notes. or confirm that they are
(Bar 1) B BDCB (Bar 2) A ?

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

From Corelli to Mozart and Bach

We had a perfect-square crowd out Monday: four firsts, four seconds, four "thriolas", and four cellos. Unfortunately our solo-designate for Pastorale from the Corelli Concerto Grosso wasn't able to come (we miss you, Cathy!) so instead of working on that, we went on to Rondo in G by Mozart. This is a piece with canon-like elements where the sections echo each other at different times. Alison mentioned to keep the first bar-and-a-half or so of these phrases strong, and the second bit, weak; that keeps the entries obvious while making way for the entry of the next section. The eighth notes should be somewhat detached. Practice the bow patterns in the running eighth notes to get the flow going smoothly. In the middle, the cellos and inner parts pass the supporting quarter notes back and forth under the firsts' melody. The musical term of the week is Tritone, the interval in the "question-and-answer" section near the end. (I'm not quoting bar numbers since they're probably different for the different sections.) No matter how demonic, they should be played out and emphasized.

We also received Die Kunst der Fuge ("The Art of the Fugue") by Bach as out first undertaking of counterpoint. (Loads of information in the Wikipedia entry. I must read Gödel, Escher, Bach again.) The beginning is the same for each section, albeit starting at different times; it diverges after a few bars. We experimented with singing it in sections (in rhythm, not necessarily with any particular pitch!) to get used to the timing.

For next rehearsal, have a look at these two and the Pastorale; hopefully our soloist will be able to play the interesting bits of the latter so we can practise the less-interesting-but-still-important bits!