American Choral Review Archive

Volume 19, No. 1

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Articles

Pachelbel's Christ lag in Todesbanden: A Possible Influence on Bach's Work

by Crawford R. Thoburn

ABSTRACT:

It has long been acknowledged that J.S. Bach modeled some...

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ABSTRACT:

It has long been acknowledged that J.S. Bach modeled some of his choral music on works by earlier composers. Bach biographer Philipp Spitta noted the similarity between Buxtehude's cantata Jesu, meine Freude and Bach's motet based on the same chorale. A similar relationship exists between the cantata Christ lag in Todesbanden by Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706) and Bach's Cantata No. 4. This hypothesis may suggest solutions for two related problems that have confronted everyone who has attempted to deal with this work: the proper chronological place of the cantata in Bach's output, and its unique, retrospective structure and scoring. Yet a comparison of Pachelbel's setting with Bach's is interesting and instructive not only because of their possible connection, but also for the insights such a study provides into the musical essence of the latter.

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Notes on Medieval Performance Practice

by Joel Kramme

ABSTRACT:

It is generally agreed that sacred polyphonic performances prior to...

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ABSTRACT:

It is generally agreed that sacred polyphonic performances prior to the middle of the fifteenth century, as a rule, involved accomplished trained soloists. There are, however, enough dissenting opinions to warrant fuller explanation and clarification; solo rendition of each part of the polyphonic texture seems to have been neither a musical ideal nor a matter of socio-economic consequence.

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