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Fugue in G minor (Little)

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach

Instrument: Percussion Quartet

Level: Easy/Intermediate

Published: 2018

Price: €25.00

Item details

  • Description +
    • Duration: 5 min.
      Arranged by Michiko Noguchi
      Performing Artists: Tatsuo Sasaki, Makino Takahashi, Shino Machida & Michiko Noguchi

      This, together with the Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, is an early work, either from Bach’s Weimar period, or perhaps even earlier.  Bach composed this particular fugue and numerous other organ works at that time as he was employed as a court organist.  The work has become a well-established part of the organ repertoire under the title of ‘The Little Fugue’, in contrast with the large-scale fugue in the ‘Fantasia and Fugue’ (BWV542) in the same key. The theme is beautiful, the counterpoint unfolds extremely fluently, and despite being only about three and a half minutes in duration, it has an assured place among the finest of Bach’s organ compositions.  It is said that Bach himself very much enjoyed playing it.

      All Bach repertoire was arranged for the purpose of recording the CD "Back to Bach" which was released in November 2017 in Tokyo.
      The repertoire performed by marimba players today are mostly modern original pieces. However it is very important to get to know classical music, especially that of Bach. It is my wish to to make marimba ensemble more popular and provide music which is not too difficult technically, yet contains high artistic quality. This was my motivation to release this Bach series, Music,and CD. The title "Back to Bach" reflects this wish, and repertoire on the CD was performed by world renowned marimba performers.♪ iTunes :http://qq1q.biz/JT5D

      Note: This quartet can be played on two marimbas (5.0 Octave and 4.3 Octave Marimba).

      Michiko Noguchi

  • Instrumentation +
    • This quartet can be played on two marimbas (5.0 Octave and 4.3 Octave Marimba).

  • About the composer +
    • Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750) was a German composer and musician of the Baroque period. He enriched established German styles through his skill in counterpoint, harmonic and motivic organisation, and the adaptation of rhythms, forms, and textures from abroad, particularly from Italy and France. Bach's compositions include the Brandenburg Concertos, the Goldberg Variations, the Mass in B minor, two Passions, and over three hundred cantatas of which around two hundred survive. His music is revered for its technical command, artistic beauty, and intellectual depth. 

      Bach's abilities as an organist were highly respected during his lifetime, although he was not widely recognised as a great composer until a revival of interest and performances of his music in the first half of the 19th century. He is now generally regarded as one of the greatest composers of all time.

  • Reviews +
    • Review (Percussive Notes, June 2020)

      I love Bach on marimba! I think this music unfolds beautifully on the instrument in a way that does not always happen with the works of his contemporaries. Maybe it’s because of its stalwart presence in the percussion community as an obligatory rite of passage, or perhaps it is in the brilliant counterpoint that is crafted in such a way that Bach himself often arranged his pieces for different instrumentation; regardless, any arrangement of Bach for marimba is welcome in my book.

      Special note should also be given to arrangements of Bach that do not stem from the solo violin or cello works more commonly encountered. In arranging BWV 578, “Fugue in G minor” for percussion quartet, Michiko Noguchi has provided a service for the percussion community and perhaps challenged us to look further into the Bach repertoire. Additionally, Noguchi has preserved the musical lines much in the way Bach would have intended with no notated dynamicsand little notated phrase markings, forcing the performer to interpret phrasing and ensemble listening with an eye toward historically informed practice.

      This arrangement is cleanly engraved, and the piece comes with a score and quality performance parts, making this arrangement an attractive choice for percussion ensemble. This arrangement would work well for advanced high school and undergraduate college ensembles looking to liven up their concert with a brief, around 3½-minute, Baroque transcription that is sure to enthrall listeners.

      —Quintin Mallette

  • Credits +
    • Front Cover graphics and layout: Ronni Kot Wenzell
      Engraving: Michiko Noguchi
      Printed in Copenhagen, Denmark
      Copyright © 2018 Michiko Noguchi