Johann Sebastian Bach created some of the most significant music in history, including A Keyboard Practice Consisting of an Aria with Thirty Variations for the Harpsichord—commonly known as the Goldberg Variations. Goldberg is Johann Gottlieb Goldberg, a young musician in the court of Count Keyserlingk, a Russian ambassador living in Dresden. It isn’t known for certain why Bach’s difficult composition was named for the young man, but Anna Harwell Celenza gives us one possible story based on extensive research.
About the Author
Anna Harwell Celenza is a musicologist and the author of several books for adults and children regarding music history and the history of art. Her children’s books include THE FAREWELL SYMPHONY, PICTURES AT AN EXHIBITION, GERSHWIN'S RHAPSODY IN BLUE, and VIVALDI'S FOUR SEASONS. Anna lives in Baltimore, Maryland.
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On a cold autumn morning in 1737, Count Keyserlingk sat in a wooden pew at St. Mary's church in Gdansk, Poland. The Count's friend and music adviser, Johann Sebatian Bach, had brought him there, promising a special treat.
Excerpted from "Bach's Goldberg Variations"
Copyright © 2016 Anna Harwell Celenza.
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