C. P. E. Bach’s Essay on
C. P. E. Bach (1714-1788), the second surviving son of J. S. Bach, had
an enormous impact on succeeding generations of composers. His Essay
on the True Art of Playing Keyboard Instruments says a great deal
about not only issues of harmony, ornamentation, and improvisation, but
also performance subtleties that he deems essential to proper expression.
The examples shown here illustrate when the ordinary note values should
be either held back or shortened, depending on the musical context. "In
slower or reserved tempos the phrase segments are mostly drawn out longer
than normally, especially when the bass has the same notes and pauses
as the upper notes."
Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, Versuch über die
wahre Art das Clavier zu spielen (1762). Sibley Library, Eastman
School of Music
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