Canal March

Bach's Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue

Ottavio Dantone, harpsichord

Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue in D Minor BWV 903 by Johann Sebastian Bach

It appears that Johann Sebastian Bach composed his Chromatic Fantasy and Fugue in D minor BWV 903 as a “tombeau” in homage to his first wife. This would explain the piece’s dramatic nature, in which the underlying idea is the stylus phantasticus, described by a theorist of the period (Athanasius Kircher) as an instrumental genre in which the composer is not subject to a text or formal restrictions.

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