J. S. Bach at His Royal Instrument: Essays on His Organ Works

ISBN : 9780199917235

Russell Stinson
224 Pages
162 x 240 mm
Pub date
Jan 2013
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Johann Sebastian Bach dominates the field of organ music like no other composer dominates any other repertory. It comes as no surprise, therefore, that Bach's organ works have long attracted scholarly attention. Still, the subject has by no means been exhausted. The sheer number of Bach's surviving organ compositions will always prevent anyone from having the "last word" on the subjects, either the music's stylistic diversity, or its complexity. In addition, Bach's organ works have exerted a profound and lasting influence on later generations, including many of the greatest composers, performers, conductors, critics, and scholars in the whole history of music. In J. S. Bach at His Royal Instrument, author Russell Stinson delves into various unexplored aspects of these masterpieces. Drawing on previous research and new archival sources, he sheds light on many of the most mysterious aspects of this music and its reception. Beginning with a critique of the literature, Stinson questions recent hypotheses regarding authorship and provenance of several of Bach's most famous pieces. From there he discusses the music itself, revealing compositional procedures that not only illuminate key aspects of the chorales, but those of the composer's contemporaries and predecessors as well. From there, Stinson turns to reception. From Mendelssohn and Schumann to Emerson, Lake, & Palmer, Stinson shows how Bach's music has remained a part of Western culture for nearly three hundred years. J. S. Bach at His Royal Instrument casts new light on these foundational pieces of Western music, and is essential reading for students, scholars and fans of Bach, and "the king of instruments."


Studies and Discoveries
Bach and the Varied Stollen
Some Observations on Mendelssohn's Reception of Bach's Organ Works
Bach's Organ Works and Schumann's Neue Zeitschrift
Cesar Franck as a Receptor of Bach's Organ Works
Franck's Performances of Bach's Organ Works
Matters of Pedagogy
Franck's Compositional Responses to Bach's Organ Works
Edward Elgar as a Receptor of Bach's Organ Works
Elgar as Bach Interpreter
Elgar as Bach Devotee and Bach Critic
Elgar's Bach Transcriptions
Aspects of Reception from Bach's Day to the Present
The Six Trio Sonatas, BWV 525-30
The Prelude and Fugue in D Major, BWV 532
The Prelude and Fugue in E Minor, BWV 533
The Toccata and Fugue in F Major, BWV 540
The Fantasy and Fugue in G Minor, BWV 542
The Six Great Preludes and Fugues, BWV 543-48
The Prelude and Fugue in E-flat Major, BWV 552
The Toccata, Adagio, and Fugue in C Major, BWV 564
The Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, BWV 565
The Fantasy in G Major (Piece d'Orgue), BWV 572
The Passacaglia in C Minor, BWV 582
" BWV 639
" BWV 727

About the author: 

Russell Stinson is the Josephine Emily Brown Professor of Music and College Organist at Lyon College in Batesville, Arkansas. He is the author of The Reception of Bach's Organ Works from Mendelssohn to Brahms (OUP, 2006), J. S. Bach's Great Eighteen Organ Chorales (OUP, 2001), Bach: The Orgelbuchlein (reissued by OUP, 1999), and The Bach Manuscripts of Johann Peter Kellner and His Circle.

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