In View of Paintings
Five Pieces for Piano in the Form of Preludes and Fugues on Paintings by Claude Lorrain, Jacopo Tintoretto, and Caspar David Friedrich
- “Noli me tangere“, inspired by Claude Lorrain: darkness, dawn, on the hill in the background there are still three crosses. The anxious and worried Mary Magdalene is looking for Jesus as the tomb is empty. She asks the gardener and then recognizes Him as the resurrected. He says: “Do not touch me!”
- “Saint Mary Magdalene“, inspired by Jacopo Tintoretto: Mary Magdalene – an erudite woman – reading in a mysterious, unearthly landscape.
- “The Flight into Egypt“, inspired by Jacopo Tintoretto: the Holy Family (Mary, Joseph, and the baby Jesus) fleeing from Herod as he fears the presaged “newborn king” and wants to liquidate all the children.
- “Jacob’s Dream“, inspired by Jacopo Tintoretto: Jacob in restless sleep – finally he sees a ladder in his dream on which the angels move up and down: Jacob’s Ladder.
- “Abbey among Oak Trees“, inspired by Caspar David Friedrich: in the lower and darker part of the painting there is a winter landscape, a graveyard with oak trees. Monks proceed to a funeral in the ruins of an abbey – the sky above ablaze with light.
The pieces have the form of “prelude and fugue” as in the mid-baroque period, the generation of composers before Bach. During that time, free parts alternated with fugued parts in a composition of basically one movement. They were inspired by the above mentioned paintings without trying to describe the paintings in exact detail.
The pieces can also be performed as single pieces. It would also be possible to just perform the three central pieces inspired by Tintoretto (# 2, 3, and 4).
In some parts, the pieces need an elaborate and imaginative use of the pedal. A piano with a third pedal would be of great help. If such an instrument is not available, sometimes sustained tones or chords should not be sustained for too long. “Painted” and “drawn” parts can be distinguished. The latter are fugued. In the “painted” parts, the pedal may be used to create a mysterious twilight, even if “with pedal” is not explicitly required.
Each musician may choose him/herself with which hand to play which notes independent from the notation.
Accidentals are always in effect for the whole bar, even though in some places they are repeated for reasons of clarity.
Duration: 3:00, 3:00, 2:00, 4:30, 5:30, together 18 minutes