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Johann Sebastian Bach. Johann Sebastian Bach. Johann Sebastian Bach was one of the greatest composers of all time. Though his compositions are hundreds of years old they transcend his generation and will continue to shape and mold musicians as long as music is played. Johann Sebastian Bach.

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Johann sebastian bach1
Johann Sebastian Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach was one of the greatest composers of all time. Though his compositions are hundreds of years old they transcend his generation and will continue to shape and mold musicians as long as music is played.


Johann sebastian bach2
Johann Sebastian Bach

  • Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Germany in 1685. From the beginning of his life he was constantly surrounded by music. His father was the leader of the local towns’ musicians, his mother was from a very musical family, and his uncles were all professional musicians.


Johann sebastian bach3
Johann Sebastian Bach

  • Although Bach must have had significant training from a young age at the hands of his parents, it appears that he really started to flourish and gain some renown when he attended Michaelis monastery at Lüneberg in 1700.


Johann sebastian bach4
Johann Sebastian Bach

  • Although during this time his musical abilities were increasing exponentially, he often found himself at odds with the church council as he would often shirk his church responsibilities in order to practice the organ. During this time Bachs musical prowess began to become well known and in 1707 became an organist at the New Church in Arnstadt. This new position did not turn out well for him as his musical style clashed with that of the local minister


Johann sebastian bach5
Johann Sebastian Bach

After a falling out with the minister, Bach won the post of organist at the court of the Duke Wilhelm Ernst in Weimar. While working for the Duke Wilhelm Ernst in Weima, Bach wrote some of his greatest compositions for the organ. Including Toccata and Fugue in D Minor


Johann sebastian bach6
Johann Sebastian Bach

  • in 1717 Bach accepted a position with the prince Leopold of Anhalt-Cöthen. But Duke Wilhelm Ernst had no interest in letting Bach go and even imprisoned him for several weeks when he tried to leave.


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Johann Sebastian Bach

  • Bach was eventually released and he went to work with prince Leopold. During this time Bach devoted himself much to instrumental music, concertos for orchestras, and sonatas for multiple instruments. Bach continued to work with prince Leopold until 1721 when the prince got married and his new wife discourage his musical pursuits.


Johann sebastian bach8
Johann Sebastian Bach

  • In 1721 Bach auditioned for a new position in Leipzig, Bach signed a contract to become the new organist and teacher at St. Thomas Church. This position required that he compose new music each week and so Bach threw himself into new compositions. Many of the compositions that he created during this time period were very religious.


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Johann Sebastian Bach

  • As Bach aged his eyesight began to fail. Despite this Bach still continued to teach, write and perform. In 1749 Bachs eyesight was so bad that he had an operation, but unfortunately the operation left him completely blind. Soon after his operation Bach suffered from stroke as passed away in July 28, 1750.


References
References

  • 1 - "Johann Sebastian Bach." wikipedia. N.p., 18 2012. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johann_Sebastian_Bach>.

  • 2-Hanford, Jan. "Eisenach 1685-1695." J.S. Bach. N.p.. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://www.let.rug.nl/Linguistics/diversen/bach/eisenach.html>.

  • 3- Cummings, Robert. Classical Archives. N.p.. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://www.classicalarchives.com/bach.html

  • 4- . "Johann Sebastian Bach biography." . A E Networks. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://www.biography.com/people/johann-sebastian-bach-9194289>.


History of the six cello suites by johann sebastian bach
History of the Six cello Suites by Johann Sebastian Bach

  • The Six suited for Unaccompanied cello are largely considered to be the most historically important and recognizable work for the cello. Though these works are now considered to be very monumental they were not always recognized for what they are.

  • Prior to the 1900 the Cello suites were thought to be more along the lines of etudes or studies than actual solo pieces. It was not until Pablo Casal discovered Grutzmacher’s edition of the suites in a thrift shop in Barcelona Spain at age 13 that their true potential was realized


History of the six cello suites by johann sebastian bach1
History of the Six cello Suites by Johann Sebastian Bach

  • "Suddenly I came upon a sheaf of pages, crumbled and discolored with age. They were unaccompanied suites by Johann Sebastian Bach --- for the cello only! I looked at them with wonder: Six Suites for Violoncello Solo. What magic and mystery, I thought, were hidden in those words? I had never heard of the existence of the suites; nobody --- not even my teachers --- had ever mentioned them to me. I forgot our reason for being at the shop. All I could do was stare at the pages and caress them. That sensation has never grown dim. Even today, when I look at the cover of that music, I am back again in the old musty shop with its faint smell of the sea. I hurried home, clutching the suites as if they were the crown jewels, and once in my room I pored over them. I read and reread them. I was thirteen at the time, but for the following eighty years the wonder of my discovery has continued to grow on me. Those suites opened up a whole new world. I began playing them with indescribable excitement. They became my most cherished music. I studied and worked at them every day for the next twelve years"


History of the six cello suites by johann sebastian bach2
History of the Six cello Suites by Johann Sebastian Bach

  • After the recording became public the cello suites became very popular, and this popularity has continued until the present day.

  • To the present day the Cello Suites have been recorded by some of the greatest cellists of our time: Mstislav Rostropovich, YoYo ma, MishaMaisky just to name a few.


References1
References

  • References

  • 1- Wikipedia, 17 2012. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cello_Suites_(Bach)

  • 2- Kornbluth, Jesse Jesse. "Bach: Suites for Unaccompanied Cello." . N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://headbutler.com/music/classical/bach-suites-unaccompanied-cello>.

  • 3- Janof, Tim. "Baroque Dance and the Bach Cello Suites." . N.p.. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://www.cello.org/newsletter/articles/mansbridge/mansbridge.htm>.


Listening guide
Listening Guide

  • "The hardest thing in interpreting Bach is the necessary equilibrium between human feelings, the heart that undoubtedly Bach possessed, and the severe and profound aspect of interpretation... You cannot automatically disengage your heart from the music. This was the greatest problem I had to resolve in my interpretation...” – Rostropovich(Kornbluth)


Listening guide1
Listening Guide

  • Prelude

  • 0:00- 00:20 - The First measure is sixteenth note arpeggios of the G-Major chord with an added 9th, or G,D,B,A, played in quick succession. The second measure basically does the same thing but with a C-Major 7th chord or C,E,G,B. The third measure continues this trend and plays arpeggios of C-Major 7th with a sustained 4th or G,B,C,F. These first three measures give a certain climbing sensation that can be seen throughout the Prelude of the first cello suite. But this climbing sensation is counterbalanced by always returning to the low G. I believe that this causes a certain feeling of wanting to break free of and continue climbing upward but being unable to. This, I believe, is the message of the prelude. Trying to break free of something, rise above something or reconcile something but being unable to until the very end when everything has been put on the line.


Listening guide2
Listening Guide

  • 0:20-1:27 I really love this part of the piece. I think that it demonstrates very emotionally attempting to rise above but always being brought back down. I think that this is shown by vertical aspect of the piece, it seems that the music grows in pitch slowly but cannot really escape that which it is trying to, but then is brought back down into the lower register faster than it took to go up the scale. I think that this portrays disappointment. Disappointment that things are not turning out like the player wants them too. But this early in the piece I think that there is still a measure of innocence that is portrayed, because there is no sign of frustration or really increase in dissonance, it is just accepting the disappointment.


Listening guide3
Listening Guide

  • 1:27-1:28 This is a turning point of the music. From here on out there is more portrayed frustration, and more difficulty.

  • 1:28-2:05 During this stage of the musical development I feel that the music portrays a sense of building frustration that will soon come to a head. More time is spent in the mid bass clef and less time in the upper register. The lone solitary lower notes are gone. we no longer jump out of the lower register, but have to fight out of it slowly only to be brought back down frustratingly quickly.


Listening guide4
Listening Guide

  • 2:05-2:20 Here Mediocrity is settled for. There are no high notes to look forward to or low notes to dread. Life is just creeping by with no real variation or beauty.

  • 2:20-2:43 Within this section mediocrity or the status Quo is rejected and there is one last final push to break free, or reconcile. Everything has built to this. There is a slow ascent up the chromatic scale but the anchor is still on the lower D, which is creating a lot of dissonance which you hope is resolved in the end.


Listening guide5
Listening Guide

  • 2:43-2:45 This last chord is the only time in the music that two strings are played simultaneously. I do not believe that this is a complete resolution of all the dissonance created in the previous measures, but I think that is actually the point. Things don't always turn out okay, but it you work on them, give all the effort that you can don't let the bad pull you down, then you can live and create harmony even when life is so full of hardships and disappointments.


References2
References

  • References

  • 1- Kornbluth, Jesse Jesse. "Bach: Suites for Unaccompanied Cello." . N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Oct 2012. <http://headbutler.com/music/classical/bach-suites-unaccompanied-cello>.


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