Fugue in C Major

Fugue in C Major

[performed by the composer]
instrumentation :  piano

2010
duration :  5’45”
premiere :  03.20.10 by the composer | Boston


        As both a composer and a pianist the fugue has represented a sort of insurmountable obstacle for me. The masterpieces of the Well-Tempered Clavier are not all outside the range of my abilities as a performer, but as a composer I am intimidated by their craft and beauty. Bach’s counterpoint is a sacred musical entity, embodying ideals of the Baroque while remaining striking today. Shostakovich similarly mastered the fugue, particularly with his 24 preludes and fugues, op. 87, his counterpart to the Well-Tempered Clavier. These pieces are emotionally revealing, and the form of the fugue is a vehicle which Shostakovich steers to tremendously affecting ends.
        What drew me to begin composing fugues are my own feelings of inadequacy regarding counterpoint and tonal harmony. A proscribed form takes time to become comfortable with, but it also offers a safety net while exploring the ingredients which fill it. In this way I found I was able to write for myself the performer, while cultivating myself the composer.