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The Praeludium, Fuga, & Ciacona (BuxWV 137) is a work by Dietrich Buxtehude. One of his most frequently played organ works, arranged here for brass quintet, was preserved in a collection of works copied by Johann Christoph Bach. The prelude is remarkable for its form, featuring an extended pedal solo at the opening followed by a chaccone section after the customary fugue.
Buxtehude‘s Praeludium opening has one of the most exhortatory improvisatory utterances‘ ever to have begun one of his musical orations. Like a clarion call, the introductory solo pedal passage delivers its opening statement. The theatrical exuberance of the praeludium‘s exordium must have captivated and enthralled Buxtehude‘s audiences. One only has to imagine the sensational sound as Buxtehude manoeuvred the pedals from their deepest depths through to the upper registers reverberating around the hall.
The only ensemble that can match the sonorousness of a an organ is undoubtedly the brass quintet, and this one has to be heard to be believed. You can give it a listen at the demo below, have a look at the score and part to the left, then grab an immediate digital download above.
Listen to “Praeludium, Fuga, & Ciacona”