Sunday, April 25, 2010

Coming Soon - Telemann, Fantasia #8


The weeks have a way of getting away from me, but with any luck I'll have an opportunity to record Telemann's Fantasia #8 one day this week. Number 8 is fun to play from start to finish. The tempo marking of the first movement is Largo, and it begs a very loose tempo. The motion in the movement gives a sense of yearning and searching. In the fifth and sixth measures, Telemann gives us a rare-for-him pair of descending chromatic scales. I haven't thumbed through all of the Fantasias lately, but I don't recall any other chromatic runs. For me, this is the definitive movement of this piece--very pensive and quite moving. I'll be recording the Largo movement with a number of ornamentations, largely in the second half.

The second movement is a 12/8 Spirituoso. While it's difficult for me to pick out an implied fugue in this movement as we did in Fantasia #1, Telemann repeatedly restates his theme, starting at odd beats, suggesting layers of different voices. The driving triplet pattern in the Spirituso makes for a breathless and exciting ride.

The final Allegro, like many of the final movements in the Fantasias, feels most like a dance. This 3/4 movement is strongly syncopated--the accents coming primarily on the upbeat of beat one and the downbeat of beat three. I know little--okay, nothing--about Baroque dance, but if anything feels like a Baroque dance, this one does. Every note is a step or a turn or a twist.

I'll be playing from my own transcription. I do a straight clef transposition from Telemann's E minor to my G minor. I look forward to recording this one and marking the halfway point in my Telemann project.

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