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Harmonia Early Music

Fretwork’s Reinterpretation Of The Goldbergs

This week, Bach's influence continues to spread to the string instruments.

Members of Fretwork. From left to right: Susanna Pell, Richard Tunnicliffe, Reiko Ichise, Richard Boothby, and Asako Morikawa. Seated: former member Richard Campbell who passed away in March 2011.

A few weeks ago, we featured a reinterpretation of Bach’s Goldberg Variations in which pianist Lara Downes asked that contemporary composers create their own pieces inspired by the Variations’ aria. Now Fretwork has also been inspired to create their own arrangement of the Goldberg Variations in their 2011 CD. Fretwork member Richard Boothby commented on some of the difficulties in arranging a keyboard work for an ensemble of string instruments, saying that some instruments like the tenor viol seemed to get left out because of Bach’s tendency toward the extreme ends of the keyboard. But in some instances he dropped the melody an octave to be in the range of the tenor viol.

Anna Pranger

Anna Pranger moved to Bloomington in 2009 to pursue a degree in music librarianship. Before this, she worked on a degree in music history at the College-Conservatory of Music in Cincinnati, Ohio. She serves as both an assistant producer for Harmonia and the Music Library Assistant for WFIU.

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