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Gaspar Cassadó: "Toccata 'After Girolamo Frescobaldi'"

Gaspar Cassadó

Toccata “After Girolamo Frescobaldi”

Gaspar Cassadó

Born: September 30, 1897, Barcelona, Spain

Died: December 24, 1966, Madrid, Spain

Composed: 1925

Arranged: 1955, Earl Slocumb

Duration: 6 minutes

University of Maryland Wind Ensemble

Friday, March 10, 2017, 8 pm

Elsie & Marvin Dekelboum Concert Hall

Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center

The University of Maryland at College Park

A toccata is an improvisatory form of instrumental music, originally written for organ. The name “toccata” indicates that it was conceived as a “touch piece” characterized by rhapsodic sections with sustained chords, scale passages, and broken figuration. The present toccata consists of three sections with tempos of slow, fast, and slow. The rhapsodic beginning and closing sections enclose a quick middle section, featuring French horns, which is based on a development of a tuneful fanfare motif. The subject is treated antiphonally and is varied continually through the addition of new counter-subjects and accompaniments. The movement concludes with a short, fast coda.

Girolamo Frescobaldi (Ferrara, Italy 1583 - Rome 1643), the most eminent organist of the first half of the seventeenth century, was originally credited as the composer of the Toccata. Musical scholars in the late 20th century began to question the existence of Romantic references within the Baroque setting of the piece. Eventually, in 1982, it was discovered that Gaspar Cassadó had written the work in 1925 for cello and piano, and had attributed it to Frescobaldi to promote the work, an act which Cassadó has become increasingly known for, having done the same with various other works.

Gaspar Cassadó, Toccata “After Girolamo Frescobaldi”

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