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Bach-Brahms
Arrangements/Transcriptions of Bach's Works by Johannes Brahms

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Piano Transcriptions: Works | Recordings

Johannes Brahms - Short Biography

 

Works

Work

No.

Year

Orchestra

   

Symphony No. 1 in C Minor: Mvt. 4: Allegro non troppo ma con brio
First Performance: November 4, 1876 at Karlsruhe with Otto Dessoff conducting
Instrumentation: 2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, contrabassoon, 4 horns, 2 trumpets, 3 trombones, timpani, and strings
Duration: c47 min

Op. 68

1855-1876

But there is also a resemblance to that other B or the BBB triumvirate – Bach. Musicologist David Brodbeck among others have pointed out the derivation of the first part of the theme from the funeral cantata Gottes Zeit ist die allerbeste Zeit BWV 106. The initial part of the theme is a rhetorical mourning motif (saltus duriusculus). The Beethoven reference really doesn’t come into focus until the third measure and then only briefly before trading places with Bach. These motifs are no mere quotations but instead they are woven into the entire fabric of the movement. For example, the Alp horn theme actually is a transformation of this Bach motif.
Source:
Gene De Lisa

   

Symphony No. 4 in E minor - adaptation of the passacaglia theme in the closing movement Chorus Meine Tage in dem Leide (Mvt. 7) from Cantata BWV 150

Op. 98

1886

In this symphony, Brahms has recourse to elements of more ancient music. The second movement begins with a theme in the church mode e-Phrygian. The magnificent fourth movement, with which Brahms brought his entire symphony-writing career to a close, is a generously dimensioned chaconne. An eight-bar theme. which Brahms borrowed in slightly altered form from the closing movement of the cantata Nach dir. Herr.verlanget mich, BWV 150 - a ciaccona with the text Meine Tage in dem Leide - is brought, without modulation, to a different harmonic degree through the various instrumental parts. through 30 many-layered variations and a concluding coda. This cantata had probably come to Brahms' attention through the Bach-Gesamtausgabe. of which he had the complete collection in his library, the volume in which it appeared having being published precisely in 1884. “
Source: Liner notes by Wolfrom Enßlin (Translation: Uwe Wiesemann) to the album “Bachfest Leipzig 2010 - Ausgewählte Höhepunkte” (Bach-Archiv Leipzig, 2010)

   

>>In the finale of the Fourth Symphony,...Brahms drew on the formal articulations of Bach's Passacaglia for organ and Chaconne for solo violin, the second of which he had already arranged for piano left hand, while writing 30 variations and coda, the number (minus da capo) of the Goldberg Variations. There is a 'middle section' of slow variations, all but one in the major (12-15, the last two with 'Wagnerian' brass), after which the theme returns nearly unvaried (16); this return halfway through the set suggests the 'Ouverture' of the second half of the Goldberg set. A further return to the theme and to the rhetoric of the first two variations (23-5) immediately follows the 'scherzo' variation (22). Other variations deliberately recall the first movement of the symphony: 10, with its antiphonal echoes, strange harmonies, crescendos on a single chord; and especially the final group, 28-30, which brings back the descending 3rds of the opening theme.<<
Source: Elaine Sisman from Grove Music Online, Oxford University Press, 2004, acc. 1/6/05

   
     

Organ

   

Fugue in A-flat minor, for organ (incorporating the BACH motif)

WoO 8

 
     

Links

Title

Description

Author/Webmaster

Symphony No. 4 (Brahms)

Instrumentation, Movements, Analysis, Reception, References, External links

Wikipedia

Symphony No. 4 in E minor, Op. 98

Compostition Description

Michael Rodman / AMG

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Prepared by Aryeh Oron (January 2011 - August 2011)
Thanks to contrbutors: Thomas Braatz (June 2005)

Johannes Brahms: Short Biography | Piano Transcriptions: Works | Recordings | Other Arrangements/Transcriptions: Works | Recordings | Brahms & Bach - Discussions

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Last update: ýAugust 12, 2011 ý19:46:31