In celebration of their 300th anniversary in 2020, Stephanie Chase presents compelling programs of Johann Sebastian Bach’s (1685-1750) masterful compositions for the solo violin. Her profound and captivating interpretations are formed through extensive experience playing period violin, many performances of these works, and research into Bach’s era and sound world.

In these works, she explores the ideas of pulse and tempo in the early 18th century, the influences of French Baroque dance suites, rhetoric, and tempo relationships derived from the intervallic proportions ascribed to Pythagoras and Ptolemy. These works also reference Bach’s religiosity and - especially in the Partita in D minor, which was likely composed shortly after his wife’s death - his devout faith in the face of severe challenge.

 

Ms. Chase also delves into the appearance of the golden section, or divine proportion, found in some of these works. The golden section (ɸ), which is derived from the Fibonacci additive sequence, is an aesthetically pleasing, naturally occurring proportion that has been utilized by many mathematicians and artists that include Euclid and Leonardo da Vinci, and is found in classical architecture such as the cathedrals of Notre-Dame and Chartres.
 

These recitals are accompanied by extensive program notes, and a half hour pre-concert talk by Ms. Chase is optional.

 

Stephanie Chase also offers programs for solo violin titled “Inspired by Bach,” which feature his music interspersed with music inspired by these works, such as sonatas by the Belgian violinist and composer Eugène Ysaÿe (1858-1931), which are virtuosic displays written in 1923 and dedicated to his violinist friends.  Béla Bartók’s (1881-1945) magnificently dramatic Sonata, written in 1944 for Yehudi Menuhin and one of his last compositions, features a Chaconne as its opening movement.

“Bach and The Music of the Spheres: The Sonatas and Partitas at 300”

 

PROGRAM I

Partita in B Minor (ca. 20”) – Johann Sebastian Bach

Sonata in C Major (ca. 24”) – J. S. Bach

Sonata in G Minor (ca. 16”) – J. S. Bach

 

PROGRAM II

Partita in E Major (ca. 20”) – J. S. Bach

Sonata in A Minor (ca. 24”) – J. S. Bach

Partita in D Minor (ca. 31”) – J. S. Bach

 

“Inspired by Bach”

 

PROGRAM III

Sonata Opus 27, No. 5 in G Major – Eugène Ysaÿe (ca. 10”)

Partita No. 2 in D Minor – J. S. Bach (ca. 31”)

Sonata for solo violin, Sz. 117 – Béla Bartók (ca. 30”)

 

PROGRAM IV

Sonata No. 1 in G Minor – J. S. Bach (ca. 24”)

Sonata Opus 27, No. 5 in G Major – Eugène Ysaÿe (ca. 10”)

Sonata No. 3 in C Major – J. S. Bach (ca. 24”)

Sonata Opus 27, No. 3 (“Ballade”) – Eugène Ysaÿe (ca. 7”)

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© 2019 Stephanie Chase