Give Now  »

Indiana Public Media | WFIU - NPR | WTIU - PBS

Noon Edition

Tickling The Ivories Podcast

piano-2412400_1920

Welcome to the Ether Game Weekly Podcast! This week, the Ether Game Brain Trust explores the fine way of the Steinway in a show we're calling "Tickling The Ivories"See if you can guess this piece on our podcast selection. Remember to keep your ears out for a portion of Tuesday night's Teaser selection. And don't forget to tune into the full show on Tuesday, August 1st at 8:00pm for a chance to win a prize!

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685–1750): THE WELL TEMPERED CLAVIER, BOOK I: Prelude in D major

Enrica Cavallo, piano. J.S. Bach: Das Wohltemperierte Klavier (Dynamic)

Tuning a keyboard is hard. If you try to make all of the fifths perfectly in tune, some of the thirds will be out of tune. If you make all of the thirds in tune, some of the fifths will sound awful. It's a mathematical certainty. Now, some of these simple tuning systems might work fine in one key, but if you want to modulate, it could mean dipping your toe into very treacherous waters. The two books of the Well-Tempered Clavier by Bach each feature a prelude and a fugue in each of the 24 major and minor keys. This meant that Bach had to use a special "well-tempered" tuning system that would accommodate all those keys on one instrument! It's unclear whether Bach intended to use Equal Temperament, the balanced tuning system used on modern pianos today, or some other tuning system with a similar sonic effect.

 

Music Heard On This Episode

Loading...
Support For Indiana Public Media Comes From

About Ether Game