Dietrich Buxtehude is probably most familiar to modern
classical music audiences as the man who inspired the
young Johann Sebastian Bach to make a lengthy
pilgrimage to Lubeck, Buxtehude's place of employment
and residence for most of his life, just to hear
Buxtehude play the organ. But Buxtehude was a major
figure among German Baroque composers in his own right.
Though we do not have copies of much of the work that
most impressed his contemporaries, Buxtehude
nonetheless left behind a body of vocal and
instrumental music which is distinguished by its
contrapuntal skill, devotional atmosphere, and raw
intensity. He helped develop the form of the church
cantata, later perfected by Bach, and he was just as
famous a virtuoso on the organ.
Like the Praeludia, BuxWV 144 and 145, this Toccata in
F major works much like a prelude and fugue. It
consists of two sections, an extended free toccata
passage ending with a full cadence in the tonic
followed by a long extended fugue which only breaks
down into free rhapsodic passage work only measures
before the end of the piece.
I created this Interpretation of the Toccata in F Major
(BuxWV 157) for String Quartet (2 Violins, Viola &