Bach and Mozart Essays on the Enigma of Genius

Bach and Mozart Essays on the Enigma of Genius
English | ISBN: 1580469620 | 2019 | 356 pages | PDF | 7 MB
The essays in this volume, by one of America's leading authorities on Bach and Mozart, serve a single objective: to promote a deeper understanding of those two great composers both as supremely gifted creators and as human beings. Author Robert L. Marshall draws on a diverse range of interpretive strategies including both textual and musical criticism. Life and work are treated together, just as they were intermingled for the composers.

After a preliminary historiographical contemplation of the "Century of Bach and Mozart," fifteen numbered chapters follow in roughly chronological succession. Among the issues addressed: the artistic consequences of Bach's orphanhood, his relationship to Martin Luther, his attitude toward Jews, his relationship to his sons, the stages of his stylistic development, and his position in the history of music; and, moving to Mozart, the composer's portrayal in Amadeus, his wit, his indebtedness to J. S. Bach, and aspects of his compositional process.

The volume concludes with a factually informed speculation about what Mozart is likely to have done and to have composed, had he lived on for another decade or more.

ROBERT L. MARSHALL is Sachar Professor of Music emeritus, Brandeis University.

Table of Contents

  • Prologue: The Century of Bach and Mozart as a Music-Historical Epoch: A Different Argument for the Proposition
  • Young Man Bach: Toward a Twenty-First-Century Bach Biography
  • The Notebooks for Wilhelm Friedemann and Anna Magdalena Bach: Some Biographical Lessons
  • Bach and Luther
  • Redeeming the St. John Passion--and J. S. Bach
  • Bach's Keyboard Music
  • The Minimalist and Traditionalist Approaches to Performing Bach's Choral Music: Some Further Thoughts
  • Truth and Beauty: J. S. Bach at the Crossroads of Cultural History
  • Bach at Mid-Life: The Christmas Oratorio and the Search for New Paths
  • Bach at the Boundaries of Music History: Preliminary Reflections on the B-Minor Mass and the Late-Style Paradigm
  • Father and Sons: Confronting a Uniquely Daunting Paternal Legacy
  • Johann Christian Bach and Eros
  • Bach and Mozart: Styles of Musical Genius
  • Mozart and Amadeus
  • Bach and Mozart's Artistic Maturity
  • Mozart's Unfinished: Some Lessons of the Fragments
  • Epilogue (ossia Postmortem). Had Mozart Lived Longer: Some Cautious (and Incautious) Speculations
  • Bibliography
  • Notes

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