Are you wondering what is the best tempo in Prelude and Fugue in B flat major, BWV 560? Are you struggling with playing this composition up to tempo? Or perhaps you are not sure at which tempo you should practice it? Here are 7 powerful tips in finding the best tempo of this piece.
1) The concert tempo. Since it is a joyful and energetic composition, the concert tempo of this piece could be around 70 beats per minute for the quarter note.
2) Same tempo in the prelude and fugue. When you practice this piece, keep the same tempo both in the prelude and in the fugue. Sometimes it is very tempting to change the speed in the fugue because of the meter change. Note that the quarter note in the prelude should be equal to the quarter note in the fugue.
3) Practice tempo. Practicing tempo should be much slower. For best results it could be very slow - around 40 beats per minute. In general, try to pick such a tempo for practice in which you could avoid making mistakes. If you make a mistake - slow down.
4) Keep in mind the acoustics of the room. The space that you are playing will be one of the major factors in determining the speed of this piece. If you play in your practice room or at home, you can perform much faster than in a cathedral or church with huge reverberation.
5) Keep in mind the mechanics of the organ. The type of organ action also determines the tempo of this piece. In general, if you are performing on the tracker or the mechanical action instrument, try to play a bit slower because of the action. On the other hand, if you are playing on the electro-pneumatic or electronic organ you can play much faster.
6) Play fast in short fragments. If you want to achieve faster tempo in this prelude and fugue, try to practice in the following way. Press an opening note, stop, think about what's coming up next and play in a concert tempo for 1 quarter note. Then hold the note. Prepare for the next beat and play it in a fast tempo. Then stop at the next quarter note and so on. Continue this way until you reach the end of this composition.
7) Increase the length of the fragments. After you have practiced several times while stopping at each beat, increase the length of the fragment by doubling them. Try to stop every half measure (in the prelude), later stop every measure, then continue increasing the length of the fragments until you can play the entire prelude and fugue at a concert tempo without stopping.
Use the above 7 tips while practicing this wonderful composition today. You will discover how easy it is to practice it at the right tempo. While practicing this way you can achieve the concert tempo in no time.
By the way, do you want to learn my special powerful techniques which help me to master any piece of organ music up to 10 times faster? If so, download my FREE Organ Practice Guide.
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