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The pure polyphonic quality of J.S. Bach's Inventions and Sinfonias cannot be overstated - they offer an agile introduction to late-baroque musical forms and imitative writing in general, while retaining a cantabile feel. These exquisite miniatures, transcendent of the didactic purpose to which they were relegated for too long, provide an orderly and at once concise and comprehensive survey of Bach's soundscape. The purity and density of their musical substance, distilled in a sort of abstract and universal language, has naturally encouraged numerous arrangements from the 19th century onwards for vast array of other instruments. Here we have the two-part Inventions arranged for two violins by the performers, Yulia Berinskaya and Valentina Danelon, where Bach's aim of encouraging 'a cantabile style of playing' through the independence of the parts is admirably achieved in the natural expressiveness of the two stringed instruments. The three-part Sinfonias are given in the existing 19th-century arrangement for two violins and viola by Ferdinand David (1810-73), not only one of the leading violinists of his era but also a musician with very close links to Felix Mendelssohn, a composer who spearheaded a revival of interest in Bach's music. The pairing of these arrangements of Bach with a similarly-scored string trio by Taneyev is an apt one on a deeper level, too. The Russian composer was affectionately known by his composition teacher, Tchaikovsky, as the 'Russian Bach' on account of his deep knowledge and expert application of the art of counterpoint. Taneyev drew on his deep mathematical knowledge to seek out all possible combinations in his compositions, exploring and analyzing areas of polyphony like none other in his day. His Trio for two violins and viola Op.21 (1907) offers an original pairing of classical forms and language with his beloved baroque counterpoint.
The pure polyphonic quality of J.S. Bach's Inventions and Sinfonias cannot be overstated - they offer an agile introduction to late-baroque musical forms and imitative writing in general, while retaining a cantabile feel. These exquisite miniatures, transcendent of the didactic purpose to which they were relegated for too long, provide an orderly and at once concise and comprehensive survey of Bach's soundscape. The purity and density of their musical substance, distilled in a sort of abstract and universal language, has naturally encouraged numerous arrangements from the 19th century onwards for vast array of other instruments. Here we have the two-part Inventions arranged for two violins by the performers, Yulia Berinskaya and Valentina Danelon, where Bach's aim of encouraging 'a cantabile style of playing' through the independence of the parts is admirably achieved in the natural expressiveness of the two stringed instruments. The three-part Sinfonias are given in the existing 19th-century arrangement for two violins and viola by Ferdinand David (1810-73), not only one of the leading violinists of his era but also a musician with very close links to Felix Mendelssohn, a composer who spearheaded a revival of interest in Bach's music. The pairing of these arrangements of Bach with a similarly-scored string trio by Taneyev is an apt one on a deeper level, too. The Russian composer was affectionately known by his composition teacher, Tchaikovsky, as the 'Russian Bach' on account of his deep knowledge and expert application of the art of counterpoint. Taneyev drew on his deep mathematical knowledge to seek out all possible combinations in his compositions, exploring and analyzing areas of polyphony like none other in his day. His Trio for two violins and viola Op.21 (1907) offers an original pairing of classical forms and language with his beloved baroque counterpoint.
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The pure polyphonic quality of J.S. Bach's Inventions and Sinfonias cannot be overstated - they offer an agile introduction to late-baroque musical forms and imitative writing in general, while retaining a cantabile feel. These exquisite miniatures, transcendent of the didactic purpose to which they were relegated for too long, provide an orderly and at once concise and comprehensive survey of Bach's soundscape. The purity and density of their musical substance, distilled in a sort of abstract and universal language, has naturally encouraged numerous arrangements from the 19th century onwards for vast array of other instruments. Here we have the two-part Inventions arranged for two violins by the performers, Yulia Berinskaya and Valentina Danelon, where Bach's aim of encouraging 'a cantabile style of playing' through the independence of the parts is admirably achieved in the natural expressiveness of the two stringed instruments. The three-part Sinfonias are given in the existing 19th-century arrangement for two violins and viola by Ferdinand David (1810-73), not only one of the leading violinists of his era but also a musician with very close links to Felix Mendelssohn, a composer who spearheaded a revival of interest in Bach's music. The pairing of these arrangements of Bach with a similarly-scored string trio by Taneyev is an apt one on a deeper level, too. The Russian composer was affectionately known by his composition teacher, Tchaikovsky, as the 'Russian Bach' on account of his deep knowledge and expert application of the art of counterpoint. Taneyev drew on his deep mathematical knowledge to seek out all possible combinations in his compositions, exploring and analyzing areas of polyphony like none other in his day. His Trio for two violins and viola Op.21 (1907) offers an original pairing of classical forms and language with his beloved baroque counterpoint.
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