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The Art of Fugue


First in Europe, the State Wind Orchestra Trimitas performs a version of Johann Sebastian Bach’s The Art of Fugue for wind orchestra. Known as the creative laboratory and culmination of the Baroque genius Johann Sebastian Bach, The Art of Fugue was arranged for winds by Kenneth Amis (USA). Amis is a professor (tuba, conducting) at the Boston Conservatory, Boston University, and has worked with the Indianapolis, Detroit, and Shanghai symphony orchestras. He is currently a member of the Palm Beach Opera Orchestra and the Empire Brass, and conductor of the Wind Ensemble at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

The Art of the Fugue is considered Bach’s musical testament. In the work, the composer seemingly combined two complete opposites: deep faith and rational composition. The artist based his works on a strict sonic architecture and the symbolism of numbers, but in Bach’s music, the intellect is in harmony with an emotionally expressive and rich musical imagination.

The impressive musical architecture of The Art of the Fugue is further enhanced by the special spatial arrangement of the orchestra. The idea visually conveys the polyphonic structure of the work and its gradually increasing complexity. Bach’s counterpoints I-IX from this work were developed by Karolis Variakojis, a most promising conductor of the younger generation and a co-founder of Vilnius City Contemporary Music Ensemble Synaesthesis.

Conductor Karolis Variakojis

The premiere took place on 23 July 2021 (Friday), 20:00, in the courtyard of Tytuvėnai Monastery during the Bažnyčių Naktys (Church Nights) festival.