Urtext = Plain Text ? – An Analysis of the Sarabande in Eb Major, Part 3 (Bar 25-32)



This is a translation of the post

Urtext = Klartext? – eine Analyse der Sarabande in Es-Dur, Teil 3 (Takt 25-32)

by Dr. Marshall Tuttle. 

Michael Bach

This is the third part of the analysis of the

Sarabande in E Flat Major

with performance examples

and the interpretations of the cello competition *)


For glossary, slur-code and facsimile of the manuscript of Anna Magdalena Bach see Analysis Part I:


 Sarabande Es Edition MB 007
Sarabande in Eb Major,  Edition Michael Bach

Sheet music sample mm 25-28
Slurs that are understood from the polyphony and that JSB therefore did not have to notate are added in parentheses.


M 25f

Measures 25 and 26 correspond, in this case a fifth lower, melodically and harmonically to mm 9 and 10. Again, there are two possible harmonic progressions that are parallel, in major or in minor (tonic-Sub or DR-Rel).

M 27

Measure 27 is similar to M 11, launched with a tied note. Now the DR (respectively Dom) is expected here analogous to the previous example. The short irritating sixteenth note Ab3: Does this mean a transformation to the D7-chord? The answer lies in the quarter note in the bass, so that the upper voice is slurred and the note Ab3 can not be clearly classified as a chord tone of the D7-chord, but rather as a passing or suspended tone (see, in contrast, the mm 6, 16 and 18 where the sixteenth can be construed as chord tones).

Important in this context is that this note is tied, and thereafter the emphasis will be placed on the root of the DR, G3. However, the irritation of the coincidence of both (more…)


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