Back To Bach

Bach and Baroque Forms in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries

These episodes originally aired the week of April 9, 2012

« previous episode | next episode »

Monday, June 25, 2012

Conductor, pianist and one-liner machine Hans von Bulow called Johann Sebastian Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier the "Old Testament" of music (Ludwig van Beethoven's Piano Sonatas were the "New"). This week at 10 am (new time!) on Hammered! we explore Bach's far-reaching influence on contemporary piano music by returning to the source.

Especially as we recover from the aural "food coma" of last month's savory musical riches, a stylistic cleanse only seems prudent. This isn't to say, however, that Bach's music, with all its directness and clarity, isn't also pretty mavericky when you get down to it, as it is in one way or another the catalyst -- as Bulow suggests -- for so much future music.

Tune in all week at 10 am for a treasure trove of contemporary keyboard music, all framed at the beginning of each hour by a JSB-brand masterpiece. We will not only have Toccatas, Partitas, Preludes and Fugues and Cappricios from the great master but also those by Stefan Wolpe (his Three-Part Toccata), Hans Werner Henze, Arvo Part, Dimitri Shostakovich (Bach freak), Alfred Schnittke and many many more.

What piece by JSB is for you the most forward-looking?

Hosted by:

Conor Hanick
The WQXR e-newsletter. Show highlights, links to music news, on-demand concerts, events from The Greene Space and more.

Comments [1]

Les from Miami, Florida

The f minor Fugue from Book I of "The Well-Tempered Clavier" almost (!)
seems to be a 12-tone row, so that's what I'd consider the most forward-looking. I'm far from an expert, but J.S. Bach's music in general seems to exist in a "parallel universe" to this one. By that I mean it's contemporary and timeless and just as meaningful today as it was when it was composed. I also mean I don't think there's any contemporary trend that wasn't written somewhere in his astounding output. I guess what I'm really saying is that it's classic, new and sounds like it's always been there.

Jun. 28 2012 09:10 AM

Leave a Comment

Register for your own account so you can vote on comments, save your favorites, and more. Learn more.
Please stay on topic, be civil, and be brief.
Email addresses are never displayed, but they are required to confirm your comments. Names are displayed with all comments. We reserve the right to edit any comments posted on this site. Please read the Comment Guidelines before posting. By leaving a comment, you agree to New York Public Radio's Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use.