Sweet thirds and sixths
Johann Ludwig Krebs (1713-1780) was one of the most outstanding students of J.S. Bach. His prolific output for organ crosses the boundaries of the Baroque and often goes into the Galant style. Nevertheless, he's considered as the last master of German Baroque.
This morning I've sight-read his Toccata in G Major in the Galant style. This piece (2/4 meter) for one voice in each hand is written in the binary form with traditional repeats. The most developed voice is the upper part with the harmonic accompaniment in the left hand. Here's the tonal plan of this Toccata:
1. (Page 1-system 1-measure1) G major, tonic.
2. (1-5-1) E minor, relative minor.
3. (1-5-3) D major, dominant.
4. (2-3-1) A minor, relative of subdominant.
5. (2-3-3) G major, tonic.
As I've played it today, I thought some of the more difficult places for some people would be:
1. (1-5-1 to 1-5-2) Changing position on the keyboard with leaps up and down.
2. (1-6-1) Unexpected leap by a perfect fourth in the left hand part.
3. (1-6-2) The highest E is easy to miss.
4. (2-2-1 to 2-2-2) Chromatic tonicizations in both parts - ascending sequence (G major, A major, B minor, and D major).
5. (2-3-1) Prepare the high D in the left hand part in advance (right after the low D in the previous measure).
6. (2-5-2) While sensing the large leap ahead, don't forget to play previous notes in the right hand correctly. Focus your attention on the current moment.
7. (2-6-1 to 2-6-2) Descending chromatic sequence. Large leaps in the right hand part.
Here is the score for printing, if you want to play this charming little piece. I think you have to ignore the editorial markings (except the fingering) as they are not original. Use articulate legato touch.
As you look at each interval which is being played between both hands, you can't help but notice sweet sounding thirds and sixths almost everywhere (with the exception of unprepared dissonances for spice) - an indispensable feature of the free 18th century-style counterpoint.
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Drs. Vidas Pinkevicius and Ausra Motuzaite-Pinkeviciene
Organists of Vilnius University , creators of Secrets of Organ Playing.
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