Chapter

The Middle Chorales

Russell Stinson

in Bach: The Orgelbüchlein

Published in print December 1999 | ISBN: 9780193862142
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199853106 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780193862142.003.0005
The Middle Chorales

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The twenty-three works that comprise the middle compilation phase of the Orgelbüchlein include seventeen melody chorales, four chorale canons, and two ornamental chorales. The early stage of this phase is stylistically similar to the early compilation phase, except that virtually all the bass lines of the melody chorales are motivic, as opposed to “walking” basses. Thus the Orgelbüchlein-type assumes an even greater role than before. In the late stage of the middle phase, Bach introduces techniques that prefigure the final compilation phase of the collection. Bach set the chorale melody in both works as a canon at the octave and at the distance of one measure between a soprano dux and tenor comes, with the tenor line notated as an extremely high pedal part.

Keywords: canons; motivic; octave; dux; tenor

Chapter.  8153 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Musicology and Music History

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