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Chasing a Fugue

Tom Service explores fugues, trying his hand at Bach's Fugue in C minor from Book 1 of The Well-Tempered Clavier and getting tips from harpsichord player Mahan Esfahani.

Tom Service looks at music in flight - the miraculous musical form that is the fugue, where melodies chase each other, work against each other and come together in a supremely logical and often exhilarating fusion. How does it work, why is it important and can we learn to love the fugue in the 21st century? Tom tries his hand at playing Bach's Fugue in C minor from Book 1 of the Well-Tempered Clavier, a challenge to many a piano exam student, gets tips on tackling fugues from virtuoso harpsichord player Mahan Esfahani, and comes across a very contemporary take on the art of learning about fugue. Lady Gaga is involved...

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29 minutes

Music Played

  • Bach

    Toccata and Fugue in D minor BWV 565 (arr. Stokowski)

    Performer: Czech Philharmonic. Performer: Leopold Stokowski.
    • Music from Walt Disney's Fantasia.
    • Decca.
  • Bach

    Prelude and fugue; Das Wohltemperierte Klavier, bk.1 no. 2 (BWV.847) in C minor

    Performer: Sir András Schiff.
    • Bach, J S: The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1.
    • Decca.
  • Benjamin Britten

    The Young person's guide to the orchestra (Op.34) - Fugue

    Performer: City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Performer: Sir Simon Rattle.
    • Simon Rattle on EMI Classics.
    • EMI Classics.
  • George Frideric Handel

    Messiah - For unto us a child is born

    Performer: Gabrieli Consort & Players.
    • Messiah.
    • ARCHIV.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Prelude and fugue for piano no. 2 (Op.87`2) in A minor, Fugue (Allegretto) [a 3]

    Performer: Tatiana Nikolayeva.
    • 24 Preludes & Fugues Op 87.
    • Hyperion.
  • John Lewis

    A Fugue for Music Inn

    Performer: The Modern Jazz Quartet.
    • The Modern Jazz Quartet At Music Inn ‎.
    • Atlantic.
  • Bach

    Ricercar a 6 (A Musical Offering, BWV 1079) orch. Webern

    Performer: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Performer: Pierre Boulez. Performer: Pierre Boulez.
    • Boulez Conducts Webern.
    • DG.
  • Unknown

    Tom singing Frere Jaques

    Performer: Tom Service.
  • Trad.

    Children singing Three Blind Mice

    Performer: Some Children.
  • Bach

    Mass (BWV.232) in B minor, Pt.2; Cum sancto Spiritu [chorus]

    Performer: Dunedin Consort and Players. Performer: John Butt.
    • J.S. Bach: Mass in B minor.
    • LINN.
  • Johannes Brahms

    Concerto for piano and orch no.1 (Op.15)..., 3rd mvt; Rondo (Allegro non troppo)

    Performer: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Performer: Emil Grigoryevich Gilels. Performer: Eugen Jochum.
    • Klavierkonzert Nr. 1 d-moll Op. 15.
    • DG.
  • Bach

    Ricercar a 6 (A Musical Offering, BWV 1079)

    Performer: Mahan Esfahani.
    • Mahan Esfahani: Byrd, Bach, Ligeti - Wigmore Hall Live.
    • Wigmore Live.
  • Bach

    Das wohltemperierte Klavier: Praeludium II in C Minor, BWV 847

    Performer: The Modern String Quartet.
    • Das wohltemperierte Klavier.
    • Upsolute Music.
  • Bach

    Prelude and fugue; Das Wohltemperierte Klavier, bk.1 no. 2 (BWV.847) in C minor

    Performer: Sir András Schiff.
    • Bach, J S: The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book 1.
    • Decca.
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Grosse Fuge in B flat Op.133

    Performer: Belcea Quartet.
    • Beethoven : The Complete String Quartets Vol. 2.
    • Zig Zag Territories.
  • Anton Bruckner

    Symphony no 5 in B flat major IV : Finale

    Performer: Gewandhausorchester Leipzig. Performer: Kurt Masur.
    • Eurodisc.
  • Gustav Mahler

    Symphony no. 5 in C sharp minor, 5th movement; Rondo-finale

    Performer: LSO. Performer: Valery Gergiev.
    • Mahler: Symphony No. 5.
    • LSO LIVE LSO0664.
  • Dmitry Shostakovich

    Prelude and fugue for piano no. 1 (Op.87`1) in C major [complete]

    Performer: Tatiana Nikolayeva.
    • Shostakovich - Tatiana Nikolayeva - 24 Preludes And Fugues Op 87.
    • Hyperion.
  • Gentle Giant

    On Reflection

    • Free Hand.
    • Alucard ‎.
  • György Ligeti

    Requiem - Kyrie

    Performer: London Voices. Performer: Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra. Performer: Jonathan Nott.
    • Gyorgy Ligeti: The Ligeti Project (complete).
    • Warner.
  • Giovanni Dettori

    Lady Gaga Fugue

    Performer: Vincenzo Culotta.
    • www.giovannidettori.com.
  • Bach

    Tom plays Das Wohltemperierte Klavier, bk.1 no. 2 (BWV.847) in C minor

    Performer: Tom Service.

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