The Live Music Project of Fairfield University presents an evening of J.S. Bach and Sons at the Quick Center for the Arts April 20


The Live Music Project, the Quick Center's resident conductor-less ensemble, presents "The Amazing World of J.S. Bach and His Family" at the Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts on Friday, April 20 at 8 p.m. Joining the string and wind ensemble of 13 from New Haven, Hamden and Stamford, is baritone Jason Steigerwalt, also of New Haven and special guest Wei-Yi Yang, pianist and faculty member of the Yale School of Music.

Daniel Smith, composer, musician and the evening's narrator and violinist Netta Hadari are the founders of LMP. Together, they have created an exhilarating and informative evening that focuses on the music of the master and that of three of his sons. Incorporated into the evening are readings of Bach family letters, often revealing surprising anecdotes about themselves and the world in which they flourished. 

The program distinguishes each of the four Bach family members' very different musical styles. Mr. Yang will play a movement of a concerto by C.P.E. Bach that demonstrates the beginnings of the concerto genre and illuminates the interesting dialogues that happen between orchestra and soloist. Musically, the writing is sometimes dark, sometimes rousing, and always surprising with unexpected and dramatic turns. Mr. Yang will also perform J.S. Bach's C-Minor Prelude and Fugue, a favorite from "The Well Tempered Clavier." The prelude is a short, yet fascinating work of perpetual motion, in which a deceptively simple pattern is repeated in a way that is transfixing. The prelude then moves into a fugue that could only have been written by J.S. Bach.

LMP string and wind soloists are featured on Bach's beloved Brandenburg Concerto #3 and the spirited last movement of the Violin Concerto in A Minor. The cantata "Ich Habe Genug" exhibits some of Bach's more sacred pieces.

J.C. Bach's Symphony in G-Minor is simple sounding yet stormy and is a great example of the "Sturm und Drang," or "Storm and Stress," movement of the mid 18th century. The symphony has the beginnings of classical forms, and illustrates J.C. Bach's movement toward a new direction and away from his father's heavily ornamented baroque style.

Wilhelm Freidemann Bach's small Symphony in F is very compact and is another fascinating bridge between the baroque and classical styles.

The concert ends dramatically with readings of events that lead up to Johann Sebastian Bach's death. The ensemble plays the last music to flow from the master's quill, an unfinished part of "The Art of the Fugue." Though it has been reconstructed since his death, LMP plays the unedited original version, which eerily trails off at a profoundly relevant moment in musical history, the moment when the great composer and father of other great composers died.

Tickets are $25 and are available online at www.quickcenter.com or by calling the Box Office at (203) 254-4010.  The toll free number is 1-877-ARTS-396.  For more information, please visit the website at www.quickcenter.com.

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Media Contact: Joan Grant, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2950, jgrant@fairfield.edu

Posted on April 9, 2007

Vol. 39, No. 198