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The Foundations of Music


We have produced a Style Guide to help editors follow a standard format when editing a listing. If you are unsure how best to edit this programme please take a moment to read it.
The Well-Tempered Klavier-II (1744)
Prelude and Fugue No. 25 in C; No 26 in C minor ; No. 27 in C sharp ; No 28 in C sharp minor; No. 29 in D
BACH'S famous biographer, Spitta, has well said that The Well-Tempered Clavier reflects the whole of the Cothen period of Bach's life with its peace and contemplation, its deep and solemn self collectedness.' The Well-Tempered Klavier, comprising 48 Preludes and Fugues, is supposed to have been written when Bach was residing in a place where there were no musical instruments ; which means that Bach conceived the whole work on paper. Bach said that his ' Preludes and Fugues 4-n every tone and semitone ' were ' for the use and profit of young musicians anxious to learn, and as a pastime for others already expert in the art '. Yet despite the fact that he really devised them as instructional exercises for his own pupils as well as for the establishment of the tempered scale, the music is full of vitality and spontaneous beauty of ideas. It was an instance of inspired academicism.


Played By: Frank Merrick

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