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Re: GG: slashing repeats

From: "Bradley P Lehman" <bpl@UMICH.EDU>

> The two musical forms most germane to this question are (1) binary dance
> movements (Baroque and later) and (2) "sonata-allegro" (CPE Bach and
> later).  In both of these types of music there are two sections, each
> repeated: AABB.  Further, there is a typical key scheme organizing these
> forms:

It may be very true from the musicological/historical point of view but for a
plain listener approaching performances spontaneously and less cerebrally than
emotionally the repeats are often hard to perceive.
I agree with Karl Berry that repeating the resolution seems redundant.

I once even analysed a score of the Sarabande from the g minor English suite
(music is so powerful it can force a person without any musical background like
me study the complex scores... :).
Here what I scribbled (from a listener's point of view, mind you:)

"Well, the debate about omitting the parts is very hot as far as I know - half
the listeners like the omissions and the other half not.

I belong to the 1st group when repeats are played for the sake of repeating and
to the 2nd where the performer is trying hard to be creative. Even repeats
without changes can be acceptable, though, but it depends on the length of the
repeats: it's great to hear Gavotte I repeated, even with no changes, after
Gavote II but an overture from an orchestral suite in the form of AABABA is
usually tiring.

Even if there are additional ornaments provided specially for the repeats, the
ABAB form may seem almost illogical. For example, I've looked at the score of
the Sarabande from the 3rd English Suite and there are actually two scores for
this same work - one score with little ornaments (let's name the parts A1 B1 in
this score) and one more with many of them (A2 B2, "Les agrements de la meme
Sarabande" - can anyone translate it?)

So I've heard 3 ways of playing the Sarabande: A1 A2 B2 (Gould), A1 A1 B1 B1
(someone at
MP3.com), A1 B1 A2 B2 (Leonhardt). The most logical way of playing seems to be
the 1st
one because A1 is an introduction, A2 is an ornamented preparation for the final
and the B2 part is, well, the final part.

I can't see why it is needed to repeat the end two times with no changes as the
MP3.com gal does. She doesn't use ornamentation at all - maybe those
embelishments are not by Bach but rather by Egon Petri and her teacher told her
they weren't authentic :)

Leonhardt's approach is probably the most correct of all (probably JSB indicated
so himself) but I simply regard his performance as one work repeated twice in a
row, like "did you like my sarabande? it has ended so here I go with another
version of it!".

Anyway, I like the A1 A2 B2 form - Gould uses the ornamented B part right away
and it feels natural. The last three bars of the B part sound so determinedly
finishing, don't they?

In this case I welcomed Gould's machete..."

Juozas Rimas Jr (not the one playing)
http://www.mp3.com/juozasrimas (oboe, piano, strings)