Bach, Department Stores, and Movies

I love Johann Sebastian Bach (31 March 1685 – 28 July 1750).  I love his fugues. I love his toccatas.  I love his concertos, his passions, his cantatas … well, I pretty much love everything Bach ever wrote.  And others over the centuries love everything Bach ever wrote.  Why, even Ludwig von Beethoven (another composer whose music I adore) said that, as far as he was concerned, Bach was the “original father of harmony.”

All right, bottom line here is that I love Bach and nearly all of his music.  Cue the applause from other Bach and classical music fans and aficionados.

I also happen to love pop culture.  I loved the 1988 Penny Marshall directed movie, “BIG” starring Tom Hanks, Elizabeth Perkins, and Robert Loggia.  The story line was engaging; the acting was just right.  In one of the scenes, Tom Hanks and Robert Loggia are walking through the department store when this happens.

Years later — 26 to be exact — the piano is still found in the department store where the scene was filmed.  And not only is it still in the department store, it’s still being played!  The best part is that there are staff members with some classical training who give performances on this piano.

So what does this have to do with Johann Sebastian Bach?  Click on this video and you’ll see for yourself.

Now, wasn’t that worth the time watching those two video clips?  I think so.  And if you didn’t really know or like Johann Sebastian Bach before today, perhaps you have a new respect for his music and how virtuosity comes in many forms.

Elyse Bruce



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