fugue

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fugue

(fyo͞og) [Ital.,=flight], in music, a form of composition in which the basic principle is imitative counterpointcounterpoint,
in music, the art of combining melodies each of which is independent though forming part of a homogeneous texture. The term derives from the Latin for "point against point," meaning note against note in referring to the notation of plainsong.
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 of several voices. Its main elements are: (1) a theme, or subject, stated first in one voice alone and then successively in all voices; (2) the continuation of a voice after the subject, forming an accompaniment to the subject statements in the other voices and sometimes assuming sufficiently distinct character as to be called a countersubject; and (3) passages that are built on a motivemotive
or motif
, in music, a short phrase or passage of two or more notes and repeated or elaborated throughout the composition. The term is usually used synonymously with figure.
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 or motives derived from the subject or the countersubject but in which these themselves do not appear. Those sections in which the subject appears at least once in all voices are called expositions; those in which it does not appear at all are called episodes. Expositions other than the opening one often modulate. The formal structure of any fugue is an alternation of exposition and episode, and an infinite variety of formal scheme is possible. The term fugue designates a contrapuntal texture which may be in any formal design. Imitation as the systematic basis for musical texture was first applied during the generation of Josquin Desprez, Loyset Compère, and others, c.1500. During the 16th cent. the technique was further developed in the instrumental ricercare and canzone. In Germany in the 17th cent. composers such as Sweelinck, Froberger, and Buxtehude developed contrapuntal pieces based on one subject, which led to the fugal style exemplified in the Art of the Fugue, the Goldberg Variations, and the Well-tempered Clavier of J. S. Bach, the master of fugue. After him fugue was adapted by Haydn, Mozart, and Beethoven to the classical style. Brahms was the chief composer to make use of the fugue in the romantic period. A contemporary volume of preludes and fugues is Paul Hindemith's Ludus Tonalis (1943).

Bibliography

See A. Mann, The Study of Fugue (1958), R. Bullivant, Fugue (1971).

Fugue

 

in music, the most mature form of imitative counterpoint (seePOLYPHONY).

The fugue is based on a short melody, or theme, that is stated and developed by two or more voices in turn; once stated, the theme is known as the subject. In the opening section of the fugue, called the exposition, the subject appears sequentially in all the voices, with the first voice stating it in the main key and the second voice stating it in the dominant; this pattern is then repeated. These complementary statements are referred to as subject or answer, or dux and comes (literally, “leader” and “companion”). Occasionally the answer may be in the subdominant, and in the modern fugue it may appear in any key.

The second statement (first imitation) of the subject is followed by a melody that forms a counterpoint to the answer or subject and is called the countersubject. Statements of the subject generally alternate with developmental passages called episodes. Sometimes the brevity of the exposition is counterbalanced by additional statements of the subject and answer, which, when they appear in all voices, constitute the counterexposition.

The middle section of the fugue is devoted to a tonal development of the subject in keys not used in the exposition. It is in the middle section that a strictly polyphonic treatment occurs, with the composer making use of combined counterpoint; the stretto, which is a type of canonical treatment of the subject; or alteration of the subject through, for example, inversion or augmentation. The conclusion of the fugue occurs in the main key and generally takes the form of a recapitulation.

The simple fugue, unlike the sonata form, does not develop a second subject; instead, it concentrates on a single musical idea. This is true even of double and triple fugues (which are based on two or three subjects respectively), since the additional subjects form a kind of extension or complement to the primary subject.

Fugues may be written as independent works; often they are preceded by a prelude, toccata, or a fantasia. Sometimes the fugue is united with the piece that precedes it to form a cycle, as in J. S. Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier, P. Hindemith’s Ludus Tonalis, and D. D. Shostakovich’s Twenty-four Preludes and Fugues. The fugue may constitute a movement in such cyclic forms as the sonata and oratorio, or it may be a section of a piece in one or more movements.

The fugue developed from such early forms as the canzone and the ricercar (the latter exemplified by the work of G. Gabrieli in the 16th century); it was further developed in the instrumental music of such 17th-century composers as G. Frescobaldi at a time when the major and minor modes were becoming established in the transition from strict to free polyphony. The fugue reached its apex in the work of Bach and G. F. Handel. It appeared less often between the second half of the 18th century and the early 20th century, but such composers as W. A. Mozart, L. van Beethoven, C. Franck, and S. I. Taneev created masterpieces of the form. In the 20th century the fugue has attracted the attention of such composers as I. F. Stravinsky, Hindemith, Shostakovich, and R. K. Shchedrin, who have used it for the expression of innovative musical ideas.

REFERENCES

Protopopov, V. Istoriia polifonii v ee vazhneishikh iavleniiakh: Russkaia klassicheskaia i sovetskaia muzyka, Moscow, 1962.
Protopopov, V. Istoriia polifonii: Zapadnoevropeiskaia klassika XVIII–XIX vv. Moscow, 1965.
Polifoniia: Sb. teoreticheskikh statei. Moscow, 1975.
Chugaev, A. Osobennosti stroeniia klavirnykh fug Bakha. Moscow, 1975.
Ghislanzoni, A. Storia della fuga. Milan [1952].

fugue

[fyüg]
(psychology)
A flight from reality, as in hysteria, during which an individual performs acts which later are not recollected.

fugue

1. a musical form consisting essentially of a theme repeated a fifth above or a fourth below the continuing first statement
2. Psychiatry a dreamlike altered state of consciousness, lasting from a few hours to several days, during which a person loses his memory for his previous life and often wanders away from home

Fugue

(language, music)
A music language implemented in Xlisp.

["Fugue: A Functional Language for Sound Synthesis", R.B. Dannenberg et al, Computer 24(7):36-41 (Jul 1991)].
References in periodicals archive ?
Since Bach's fugues require textural clarity, it is important to play legato with fingers instead of using the damper pedal.
The Chopin biographer Friedrich Niecks quoted Friederike Streicher-Muller, a Chopin student and professional artist (until her marriage), who recalled, "One morning he [Chopin] played from memory fourteen Preludes and Fugues of Bach's, and when I expressed my joyful admiration at this unparalleled performance, he replied, 'Cela ne s'oublie jamais' " ("I'm not able to forget them," my translation; cited by Jean-Jacques Eigeldinger, Chopin: Pianist and Teacher as Seen by his Pupils, trans.
Also of interest is the way in which Bach begins two of the fugues in book two of the WTC.
This article aims (a) to bring the musical influence in Gass's works to the fore by examining both "A Fugue" passage from The Tunnel and The Pedersen Kid novella in compliance with Gass's conception of language and its musicality; (b) to assess ways in which texts that do not necessarily manifest a direct link to music can be given a musical reading by focusing on intermedial time patterns; (c) and to demonstrate that the musical undertext conveys symbolic, iconic or even allegorical meanings that, in the case of Gass's The Pedersen Kid allow a better understanding of initiation and rite of passage paradigms the story draws upon.
Another tonal feature often used in fugues is the pedal point.
Some of the big fugues (those of BWV910-11 in particular) are taken rather too deliberately for my taste.
In his last fifteen years, he turned increasingly to abstract and technically complex polyphonic genres, especially canon and fugue. It was during these years that he composed the Goldberg Variations, A Musical Offering, and the Art of Fugue.
The disc is a musical journey through different styles and moods, from a stately Bach fugue to a rollicking blues from St.
87 cycle of preludes and fugues for piano into a book designed for Shostakovich enthusiasts -- musicians and non-musicians alike -- with a basic understanding of music theory.
Elsewhere there's the Fantasia and Fugue in G minor (shapeless in places), 13 chorale preludes (some not very memorable) and various other pieces.The two trio sonatas don't really have enough tonal variety, while the Fugue la Gigue needs more of a spring in its step.
Here, we find fugues and ricercares of clearly drawn character that also provide a musical and technical bridge to the art of high baroque counterpoint.