July 13, 2007 at 5:54 AMMy quartet played some of Bach's fugues tonight. They seem quite simple on the surface - lots of half notes, quarter notes with a few 1/16ths thrown in for good measure (pun intended). Practicing these by yourself is quite boring. I ended up running through them quickly then putting them aside. Well, throw in 2 violins and a cello into the mix and the story is entirely different. Mis-count your 15 measures of rests before you come in and you don't know you are off until the piece ends and you are either still playing when everyone else finished or visa versa. Even worse is when the piece ends on a fermata, and you only clue that you are off by either a beat or a whole measure is the occasional "off note" that didn't quite sound right with everyone else. But when everyone is couting correctly at the exact same tempo - WOW - you can definitely feel the music resonate.
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