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La critique musicale et ses malentendus

Ghyslaine Guertin

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– Discours I –

Genius can do no wrong, I guess. To begin with, the “Art of the Fugue,” Bach’s last big work, unfinished at his death, wasn’t written for organ, or anything else. Just notes on paper, exploring the furthest implications of composing technique applied to an ultra-simple theme. It has been arranged for all sorts of media; it can be played successfully on the organ. But how, and by whom?

Glenn Gould, it says here, was an organist first, before his pianistic fame began. He appeared in Toronto at 14. Well, maybe so. All I can say is that the benevolent eccentricity of genius was never more wonderfully exposed than in this Gould organ recording! I could scarcely believe my ears. I’m willing to bet that many a professional organist will turn green and pink and blue with shock.

What’s wrong with it? Well, oddly enough, it isn’t easy to say. It is always musical – Gould is without question a musician in the innate sense, wherever he goes and whatever he...

© Presses de l’Université de Montréal, 2013

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