Canons, cabbages and the Goldberg Variations.
David Juritz and Sandy Burnett talk about Bach
Bach plays with canons
David Juritz talks about Bach’s use of canons
‘It’s always lovely to chat with Sean Rafferty’.
David Juritz, Craig Ogden and Tim Hugh talking about the Goldberg Variations on BBC Radio 3 In Tune.
Arranging the Goldbergs for violin, guitar and cello
In 2017 I started work on an arrangement of Bach’s Goldberg Variations for violin, guitar and cello for a concert at the lovely Studio Music series in Brightlingsea.
I very quickly realised that it wasn’t a particularly good idea. Distributing the parts between the instruments was problematic (the range of the guitar and cello are very similar), as was finding idiomatic ways to treat the passagework.
Unfortunately, by this time, the concert programme had already been printed leaving me with no other option than to put my anxiety to one side and continue. Luckily, I had two factors on my side while working on this project: Bach’s wonderful counterpoint and, in Craig Ogden, a virtuoso guitarist whose technical accomplishment is matched only by his Aussie ability to remain unruffled in the face of any challenge. Listeners may notice that the guitar and the cello are often exploring the upper reaches of their range. (The violin part lies very comfortably though!).
I found that the different colours and attack of the three instruments complemented one another beautifully while providing just the right degree of contrast. It was also possible to emulate the passages Bach wrote for a double keyboard while the guitar’s rhythmic energy and incision, like a harpsichord’s, allows his counterpoint to emerge with real clarity.’
I’ve tried to stay as faithful to Bach’s score as possible and also to remain in a sound world that would have been familiar to him. We’ve found that the different colours and attack of the three instruments complement one another well and create just the right degree of contrast. It was also possible to emulate the passages Bach wrote for a double keyboard while the guitar’s rhythmic energy and incision, like a harpsichord’s, allows his counterpoint to emerge with real clarity.
Had I been more sensible this project may never have happened but an enthusiastic audience and our enjoyment of new music to explore encouraged us to continue. We’re delighted that it’s final resulted, not only in our recording, but also in the publication of the score and parts for other musicians seeking new repertoire. D.J.
“One hopes that Juritz’s “curating” of a great classic will appear on CD.“
The Quarterly Review
2. Variatio 1. a 1 Clav.
3. Variatio 2. a 1 Clav.
4. Variatio 3. Canone all’ Unisuono. a 1 Clav.
5. Variatio 4. a 1 Clav.
6. Variatio 5. 1 ô vero 2 Clav.
7. Variatio 6. Canone alla Seconda. a 1 Clav.
8. Variatio 7. a 1 ô vero 2 Clav. al tempo di Giga
9. Variatio 8. a 2 Clav.
10. Variatio 9. Canone alla Terza. a 1 Clav.
11. Variatio 10. Fugetta. a 1 Clav.
12. Variatio 11. a 2 Clav.
13. Variatio 12. Canone alla Quarta. a 1 Clav.
14. Variatio 13. a 2 Clav.
15. Variatio 14. a 2 Clav.
16. Variatio 15. Canone alla Quinta. a 1 Clav.(in moto contrario) andante
17. Variatio 16. Ouverture. a 1 Clav.
18. Variatio 17. a 2 Clav.
19. Variatio 18. Canone alla Sexta. a 1 Clav.
20. Variatio 19. a 1 Clav.
21. Variatio 20. a 2 Clav.
22. Variatio 21. Canone alla Settima. a 1 Clav.
23. Variatio 22. a 1 Clav. alla breve
24. Variatio 23. a 2 Clav.
25. Variatio 24. Canone all’ Ottava.a 1 Clav.
26. Variatio 25. a 2 Clav. adagio
27. Variatio 26. a 2 Clav.
28. Variatio 27. Canone alla Nona. a 2 Clav.
29. Variatio 28. a 2 Clav.
30. Variatio 29. a 1 ô vero 2 Clav.
31. Variatio 30. Quodlibet. a 1 Clav.
32. Aria da capo
Total playing time 79:40