This week you will be dipping your musical toes into one of the most characteristic forms used in the Baroque Era- the Fugue. Here is a definition from the Harvard dictionary of music –
“Fugue:The latest and most mature form of imitative counterpoint, developed during the 17th century and brought to perfection by J. S. Bach.”
Well if that definition leaves you scratching your head and wondering what you just read try this definition. A fugue is like a round- like Row Row Row Your Boat- where someone starts the tune and then someone else comes in a few measures later and so on. Only the fugues developed during the Baroque era were like rounds on steroids. The complexity is truly amazing and can be admired just for that aspect but in addition the music is enjoyable as well. I have posted an entertaining explanation from Danny Li which uses a pop song to understand the fugue form and then you will listen to a Prelude and Fugue written by none other than J. S. Bach.
Bach wrote two volumes of 24 preludes and fugues, a pair written in all major and minor keys. The example for this week is Prelude and Fugue No. 3 in C# Major from the first volume. Enjoy!
Danny Li explains the fugue
Prelude and Fuge in C# Major played Andrei Gavrilov