The Art of Fugue

New Century Saxophone Quartet

15.9927.49
Clear
Original Recording Format: DSD 64

When discussing the possibility of recording J.S. Bach’s “Die Kunst der Fuge” (The Art of Fugue, BWV 1080) with those in and outside the classical music world, the question of playing this great masterwork on saxophones invariably arises early in the conversation! After all, the saxophone was not even invented until nearly 100 years after Bach’s death. However, there are two interesting points which should allay any concerns as to the appropriateness of the music of Bach to the saxophone. First, Bach, who was known to be a man of precision regarding instrumentation and other musical issues, did not indicate any instrumentation for “The Art of Fugue.” Neither did his son C.P.E. Bach, to whom he dictated this, his final work. Second, the saxophone quartet is the only modern chamber ensemble designed as a true consort. The entire family, from sopranino to contrabass was conceived by its maker, Adolphe Sax, as an extension of a single acoustic design, uniform and complementary throughout the range. Thus the soprano, alto, tenor and baritone saxophones represent a pure consort, more consistent in tone color from top to bottom than the brass or woodwind quintet, and even the string quartet.

It was in fact a member of one of the world’s most well known string quartets who convinced NCSQ to look at this music, leading eventually to this recording. In 1994 the New Century Saxophone Quartet and the Julliard String Quartet performed in Los Angeles’ Ambassador Auditorium on consecutive nights. In a backstage conversation, the Juilliard’s cellist, Joel Krosnick, suggested that New Century explore “The Art of Fugue,” feeling it might be a good match for the sonority of a saxophone quartet. This was not the first time the quartet had heard this. Five years earlier, in 1989, Philip Dunigan, the well known flutist and teacherat the North Carolina School of the Arts, had also encouraged the quartet to play “The Art of Fugue,” however it took the advice of a second great musician, Krosnick, to get the Quartet to overcome it’s natural hesitation to take on this challenge.

Tracklist

1.
Contrapunctus 1
04:02
2.
Contrapunctus 2
02:41
3.
Contrapunctus 3
02:39
4.
Contrapunctus 4
04:33
5.
Contrapunctus 5
02:26
6.
Contrapunctus 13 - Canon All Duodecima In Contrapunto Alla Quinta
04:00
7.
Contrapunctus 14 - Canon All Cecima. Contrapunto Alla Terza
05:06
8.
Contrapunctus 7
02:13
9.
Contrapunctus 8
06:35
10.
Contrapunctus 10
03:48
11.
Contrapunctus 6
03:08
12.
Contrapunctus 9
02:02
13.
Contrapunctus 11
05:43
14.
Contrapunctus 15 - Canon Per Augmenmtationem In Contrario Motu
06:15
15.
Contrapunctus 12 - Canon Ala Ottava
02:36
16.
Contrapunctus 16 - Rectus
02:03
17.
Contrapunctus 16 - Inversus
02:05
18.
Contrapunctus 19 - Unfinished
09:34
19.
Choral - Wenn Wir In Hochsten Sein
04:03

Total time: 01:15:32

Additional information

Label

SKU

20204

Qualities

, , ,

Channels

, ,

Artists

Composers

Genres

,

Cables

van den Hul

Digital Converters

DCS DSD AD/DA

Mastering Engineer

Jared Sacks

Mastering Equipment

B+W 803 diamond series

Microphones

Bruel & Kjaer, Schoeps

Mixing Board

Rens Heijnis custom made

Awards

,

Original Recording Format

Producer

Jared Sacks

Recording Engineer

Jared Sacks

Recording location

Doopsgezinde Kerk Deventer Holland

Recording Software

Pyramix

Recording Type & Bit Rate

DSD64

Speakers

Audio Lab

Release Date May 10, 2014

Press reviews

Audiophile Audition

one of the best saxophone quartets …. a fascinating musical experience and a fascinating listening experience. Audiophile Audition

International Record Review

sounds as wonderful as ever when played on four saxophones () () this is no ordinary recording but a devotedly virtuoso traversal of some of the most mind-bogglingly ingenious and inspired examples of counterpoint ever committed to manuscript.() International Record Review

Amazon.com

Bach never heard a saxophone, but the clarity, virtuosity, and restrained expressively of this performance would probably have pleased him greatly. (…) Amazon.com

The Independent 5 out of 5

couldn’t be better

HiFi

superb transcription () () the clarity, the shape and colouring of the phrases, the way individual players inter-relate and the warm, luminous sound () () extraordinarily moving effect. The Independent () Het vileine kakarter van de stukjes komt prima tot zijn recht en ook de virtuoze passages worden briljant gespeeld () Hifi

Reviews

There are no reviews yet.

Only logged in customers who have purchased this product may leave a review.

Channel Classics 251 albums

Related products

Currency
Cart