Canon in D Major

I was so excited when listening to Canon D major work of a composer named Johann Pachelbel from Germany. As I want to explode myself with the dimensions and fly to the highest skies.

Opening bars of Toccata in C major. Two-voice ...

An excerpt from the ending of motet Gott ist u...

An excerpt from the ending of motet Gott ist unser Zuversicht (bars 92–95). These are the first choir's parts, the notes and lines for the second choir are the same. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An excerpt from Pachelbel's Canon in D

An excerpt from Pachelbel's Canon in D (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème (a) et var

Pachelbel Canon thème (a) et var (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon harmonie

Pachelbel Canon harmonie (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème (b) et var

Pachelbel Canon thème (b) et var (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème (b) et var

Pachelbel Canon thème (b) et var (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème et couplet 1

Pachelbel Canon thème et couplet 1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème et couplet 1

Pachelbel Canon thème et couplet 1 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pachelbel Canon thème (a) et var

Pachelbel Canon thème (a) et var (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Who is he? i copied from wikipedia for his biography;

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Performed and realized on synthesizers by Jeffrey Hall.

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Pachelbel’s Canon[1] is the most famous piece of music by German Baroque composer Johann Pachelbel. It was originally scored for three violins and basso continuo and paired with a gigue in the same key. Like most other works by Pachelbel and other pre-1700 composers, the Canon remained forgotten for centuries and was rediscovered only in the 20th century. Several decades after it was first published in 1919, the piece became extremely popular, and today it is frequently played at weddings and included on classical music compilations, along with other famous Baroque pieces such as Air on the G String by Johann Sebastian Bach.

[edit] History

Although Pachelbel was renowned in his lifetime for his chamber works (contemporary sources praise his serenades and sonatas), most of them were lost. Only Musikalische Ergötzung, a collection of partitas published during Pachelbel’s lifetime, is known, and a few isolated pieces in manuscripts. Canon and Gigue in D major is one of such pieces. A single manuscript copy of it survives, Mus.MS 16481 in the Berlin State Library, which contains two more chamber suites; another copy, previously kept in Hochschule der Künste in Berlin, is now lost.[2] The circumstances of the piece’s composition are wholly unknown. One writer hypothesized that the Canon may have been composed for Johann Christoph Bach‘s wedding, on 23 October 1694, which Pachelbel attended. The music for the occasion was provided by Johann Ambrosius Bach, Pachelbel, and other friends and family members.[3] Johann Christoph Bach, the oldest brother of Johann Sebastian Bach, was a former pupil of Pachelbel.

The Canon (without the accompanying gigue) was first published in 1919 by scholar Gustav Beckmann, who included the score in his article on Pachelbel’s chamber music.[4] His research was inspired and supported by renowned early music scholar and editor Max Seiffert, who in 1929 published his arrangement of Canon and Gigue in his Organum series.[5] However, that edition contained numerous articulation marks and dynamics not found in the original score; furthermore, Seiffert provided tempi which he considered right for the piece, but which were not supported by later research.[6] The Canon was first recorded in 1940 by Arthur Fiedler,[7] and a recording of the piece was made by the Jean-François Paillard chamber orchestra.[8]

[edit] Analysis

Pachelbel’s Canon combines the techniques of canon and ground bass. Canon is a polyphonic device in which several voices play the same music, entering in sequence. In Pachelbel’s piece, there are three voices engaged in canon (see Example 1), but there is also a fourth voice, the basso continuo, which plays an independent part.

Example 1. The first 9 measures of the Canon in D. The violins play a three-voice canon over the ground bass which provides the harmonic structure. Colors highlight the individual canonic entries.

The bass voice keeps repeating the same two-bar line throughout the piece. The common musical term for this is ostinato, or ground bass (see Example 2). The chords suggested by this bass are:

Example 2. Ground bass of Pachelbel’s Canon.

chord scale degree roman numeral
1 D major tonic I
2 A major dominant V
3 B minor submediant vi
4 F♯ minor mediant iii
5 G major subdominant IV
6 D major tonic I
7 G major subdominant IV
8 A major dominant V

Similar sequences appear elsewhere in classical music. Handel used it for the main theme and all variations thereof throughout the second movement of his Organ Concerto Op. 7 No. 5 in G minor, HWV 310.[9][not in citation given] Mozart employed it both for a passage in Die Zauberflöte (1791), at the moment where the three boys first appear and in the last movement of his Piano Concerto No. 23 in A major, K. 488 (1786).[citation needed] He may have learned the sequence from Haydn, who had used it in the minuet of his string quartet Opus 50 No. 2, composed in 1785.[citation needed] Neither Handel’s, nor Haydn’s, nor Mozart’s passage is an exact harmonic match to Pachelbel’s, the latter two both deviating in the last bar, and may in fact have arisen more prosaically from one of the more obvious harmonizations of a descending major scale. This sequence is known as a plagal sequence.[citation needed]

In Germany, Italy, and France of the 17th century, some pieces built on ground bass were called chaconnes or passacaglias; such ground-bass works sometimes incorporate some form of variation in the upper voices. While some writers consider each of the 28 statements of the ground bass a separate variation,[10] one scholar finds that Pachelbel’s canon is constructed of just 12 variations, each four bars long, and describes them as follows:[11]

  1. quarter notes
  2. eighth notes
  3. sixteenth notes
  4. leaping quarter notes, rest
  5. 32nd-note pattern on scalar melody
  6. staccato, eighth notes and rests
  7. sixteenth note extensions of melody with upper neighbor notes
  8. repetitive sixteenth note patterns
  9. dotted rhythms
  10. dotted rhythms and 16th-note patterns on upper neighbor notes
  11. syncopated quarter and eighth notes rhythm
  12. eighth-note octave leaps

Pachelbel’s Canon thus merges a strict polyphonic form (the canon) and a variation form (the chaconne, which itself is a mixture of ground bass composition and variations). Pachelbel skillfully constructs the variations to make them both pleasing and subtly undetectable.[11]

[edit] See also

[edit] References

  1. ^ Also known as Canon in D major or Canon and Gigue for 3 violins and basso continuo (German: Kanon und Gigue für 3 Violinen mit Generalbaß) (PWC 37, T. 337, PC 358).
  2. ^ Welter, Kathryn J. 1998. Johann Pachelbel: Organist, Teacher, Composer, A Critical Reexamination of His Life, Works, and Historical Significance, p. 363. Diss., Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  3. ^ Schulze, Hans-Joachim. Johann Christoph Bach (1671–1721) “Organist and Schul Collega in Ohrdruf”, Johann Sebastian Bachs erster Lehrer, in Bach Jahrbuch 71 (1985): 70 and footnote 79.
  4. ^ Gustav Beckmann, “Johann Pachelbel als Kammerkomponist”, Archiv für Musikwissenschaft 1 (1918–19): 267–74. The Canon is found on p. 271.
  5. ^ Perreault, Jean M. 2004. The Thematic Catalogue of the Musical Works of Johann Pachelbel, p. 32. Scarecrow Press, Lanham, Md. ISBN 0-8108-4970-4.
  6. ^ Dohr, Christoph (2006), “Preface” (in German), Canon und Gigue für drei Violinen und Basso continuo (Urtext). Partitur und Stimmen, Dohr Verlag, ISMN M-2020-1230-7.
  7. ^ Daniel Guss, CD booklet to Pachelbel’s Greatest Hit: The Ultimate Canon, BMG Classics (RCA Red Seal)
  8. ^ Paillard’s recording, Medieval Music & Arts Foundation.
  9. ^ Handel (PDF), Organ Concerto No. 11 in G minor, HWV 310, IMSLP, pp. 4–6.
  10. ^ Ewald V. Nolte and John Butt, “Pachelbel: (1) Johann Pachelbel”, The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, second edition, edited by Stanley Sadie and John Tyrrell (London: Macmillan Publishers, 2001). ISBN 1561592390.
  11. ^ a b Welter, Kathryn J (1998), Johann Pachelbel: Organist, Teacher, Composer, A Critical Reexamination of His Life, Works, and Historical Significance, Diss., Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA: Harvard University, pp. 207–8.

[edit] External links

Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Pachelbel’s Canon

The most i admired is Canon in D Major that re-arrenged into rock form bt Jerry-C, wow…awesome 😀


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