Ralf Mardorf writes:
Bach doesn't reach the heart? Are you mad? "Erbarme dich" from the St. Matthew's
Well, what I was trying to say is that I deeply loved Bach's music before taking
the seminar. After the seminar, I had inhaled the style much more deeply and my
understanding of it jumped to a new level. Add to that the extra dimensions of
baroque genres, their stylistic norms and the ways Bach toys with them, and it's
like the hypothetical flatlander, living in two-dimensional space, suddenly
experiencing three dimensions for the first time. Or like seeing Monet only in
grayscale reproductions, and then seeing the paintings in color.
This idea that knowledge of music -- its history, context, vocabulary, technique
-- inevitably destroys the music -- it's pure nonsense, in the way physicists'
awe of nature is qualitatively different from that of someone who doesn't know
how completely insane matter is. When Bach pulls out a Neapolitan 6th, I feel it
*more intensely* (not less) by knowing it's a Neapolitan 6th and further by
knowing how N6 is commonly used in the genre.
But I'm just lucky, I guess.
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