Reaction to Bach's 'Organ Fugue G Minor'

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Reaction: Bach's "Organ Fugue G Minor" Bach's "Organ Fugue G Minor" manages to sound both melancholy and lively at the same time. Although the texture of the piece is clearly Baroque in its construction, it has emotional depth that anticipates the Romantic period. The fugue is tuneful, partially because of its inventive repetition and expressive use of contrast. As in all fugues, one melody seems to repeat the other, in a kind of a musical dance. But the different voices are multifaceted and complex. The full range of the organ is represented and the textures of the music are complex. Back's use of rhythm is also highly inventive. The piece grows faster and faster as the notes build to a climax, giving the work its driving intensity. The beginning is almost stately, until the mood begins to change as a new, slightly darker voice is introduced. It is almost as if the 'speaker' of the piece has a thought he cannot get out of his head and his mood gradually becomes darker and darker. Yet still there is the vivacious soprano, even though the base continually intrudes upon the quick sounds with its pulsating, darker tone. Even listening to the work the first time, it is easy to understand why the texture of Bach's work is so often praised. "The bedrock of his art was counterpoint, the ingenious combining and reworking of separate lines of music" (Kemp 2012). I had always heard that Bach was a very technical, almost mechanically perfect composer. When I first began to listen

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