Barnabás Dukay – Márta Ábrahám

Excerpts from Eternity

 Excerpts from Eternity presents the complete structural, motivic and harmonic analysis of the Chaconne movement of the Partita in D minor, one of J.S. Bach’s most popular violin works (BWV 1004), relying on results of cutting edge Bach-research from the 21 century.

Excerpts from Eternity is the product of the comprehensive research conducted by the authors, composer Barnabás Dukay and violinist Márta Ábrahám, both of whom are professors at the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy, Budapest.  The book offers the most detailed analysis of the Chaconne, Bach’s most famous violin work, published to this date.  The two Hungarian professors’ work is, however, not only painstaking but also groundbreaking.  They have discovered a unique time code encrypted in the structure of the piece, whose existence have been completely unknown for music historians for 300 years. Their discovery leads to new results beyond the narrow field of 21st century Bach research, some of which are significant from the perspective of art history in general.  The unveiling of the unique temporal encryption is, in fact, so important that it is perhaps not too much to say: it solves ‘the mystery of the Chaconne’ itself.

The book, which is illustrated with numerous music examples from the score and complemented with diagrams, guides the reader through the architecture of the musical processes built atop and annexed to each other in the 64 variations.  It provides insight into the previously unknown, complex musical network within the piece, and illuminates the symbolic meaning of the formal relationships that goes beyond the realm of music.

The Chaconne, which has a special significance even within J.S. Bach’s oeuvre, is the pinnacle of the formal and polyphonic musical compositional style of the baroque era.

Becoming directly acquainted with the structural organization of the piece could be illuminating for a new generation of young violinists, and might perhaps lead to a breakthrough or a paradigm shift in interpretation.  We recommend this fundamental book by B. Dukay and M. Ábrahám not only to all violinists but also to students and teachers of string or keyboard instruments, musicology or composition as well as to all educated music lovers.  It is not only the Chaconne itself that a musician ought to know after all, but also the logic and order of Bach’s use of the formal technique of variation.

Title: Excerpts from Eternity
Authors: Barnabás Dukay, Márta Ábrahám
Category: music analysis, textbook
Hardcover with sewn binding: 148 pp
ISBN 978-963-12-8720-2
Publisher: BioBach-Music Book and Music Publishing
The book is delevered together with 1 CD attachment: Johann Sebastian Bach: Partita Nr. 2. D minor, Márta Ábrahám, violin (39 minutes)


Closed item
Table of Contents

Table of Contents 5
Foreword 7
Introduction 9

„Funeral Music” 9
Intervals 10
Heptatonic Scales 11
Heptatonia Prima 12
Heptatonia Secunda 12
Heptatonia Tertia 13
Linear Musical Units, Their Inversions 14
The Golden Ratio 15
Bach’s Compositional Procedure 16
On the Editions of His Music 18
The Performance Manner os Dances 19

I. VIEWPOINTS – The foundations 21

1. Structure 21
2. The Start of the Movement as a Variation 22
3. Theme 22
4. Variants of the Theme (Chaconne Basses) 22

DIATONIC minor bass 22
DIATONIC major bass 23
Bass with THIRD-SIXTH 24

5. Special Treatment of the Theme 26
6. Inner Forms 26
7. Quotations 26
8. The Architecture of the Partita – Proportio 26
9. Tempi 27
10. Performance 28
11. Time-Rhythm 28
12. The Ratio 2 : 1 – 1 : 2 28
13. Scales 29
14. Conjunctio 29

II. Outer and Inner Forms and Proportion 30

The First Part of the Overall Form 30

Variations 1–6 30
Variations 7–12 31
Variations 13–19 32
Variations 20–21 34
Variations 22–31 35
Variations 32–33 37
Consummatio – Variations 1–33 38

The Second Part of the Overall Form 40

Praeambulum 40
Variations 34–40 41
Variations 41–46 42
Variations 47–52 44
Consummatio – Variations 34–52 45

The Third Part of the Overall Form 46

Praeambulum 46
Variations 53–54 46
Variation 55 47
Variations 56–57 48
Variations 58–59–60 48
Variations 61–62 49
Variations 63–64 49
Consummatio – Variations 53–64 51

Death and Time 53

III. More Detailed Analyses 63

Separate Analysis of the 33 Formal Units 63
Epilogue 143
List of Examples 144
List of Illustrations 148