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GLENN GOULD BACH FELLOWSHIP
HISTORY & BACKGROUND
The Glenn Gould Bach Fellowship was launched by the City of Weimar in May 2020. Celebrating the iconic, ground-breaking artefacts created by Glenn Gould around the music of J.S. Bach, the Fellowship aims to help a professionally established musician to recreate the music of the Baroque for the 21st Century.
Each Glenn Gould Bach Fellow creates over the course of their Fellowship an artistic artefact (or series of artefacts) that captures their unique musical vision. The Fellowship thereby enables them to realize an artistic vision of stature and in the process make a statement about the music of the Baroque that endures.
At certain moments in certain eras, a figure appears who both challenges our preconceptions and transforms the very way we view a subject - and Glenn Gould was one such figure. His engagement with the music of Johann Sebastian Bach was particularly influential, resulting in a body of work that continues to inspire and fascinate to this day. The Glenn Gould Bach Fellowship celebrates Glenn Gould's achievement by enabling new, visionary artists to re-create the music of Johann Sebastian Bach and of the Baroque more generally for the 21st century.
Photograph: Jock Carroll
Appearing at a unique juncture in the history of music, Johann Sebastian Bach was able to bring together a whole panoply of styles, forms and traditions that had developed over the previous generations and through a unique synthesis strengthen and enrich them all. His combination of structural rigour together with an imaginative freedom stands as a pinnacle of Baroque Music. The Glenn Gould Bach Fellowship will enable a visionary artist to recreate music from this composer and this period in ways that will challenge audiences anew and transform their experience and understanding.
For centuries the City of Weimar has been home to some of Europe's most renowned artists and thinkers; from Herder to Goethe, Schiller to Schopenhauer; from Cranach to Kandinsky and from Bach to Liszt, the city has nourished these outstanding personalities.
In keeping with this tradition, the City of Weimar will award the Glenn Gould Bach Fellowship every two years, thereby enabling a musician of outstanding caliber to realize a unique and lasting vision.
Photograph: Peter Von Bechen
EXPLORING THE BAROQUE
With its combination of extravagance and control the music of the Baroque - constituted here to mean Western Music composed between 1600 and 1750 - stands as one of the high points in European musical history. The polyphonic textures and structures, often of great complexity, invite continual re-interpretation, just as its structural severities demand the greatest discipline. The Glenn Gould Bach Fellowship presents a visionary musician with the chance to reimagine this extraordinary music for audiences of the 21st century and in the process engage in new and exciting ways with this rich and vital heritage.
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