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Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier, without copyright: a new recording, digital score, and braille edition for blind musicians.

We have a new stretch goal - $50,000 - which will allow us to make a braille version of the Well-Tempered Clavier. Watch this video to understand why that's important:

Blind musicians, who read braille scores when learning music, have to settle for less than 1% of the repertoire. The rest hasn't been converted into braille. We can engineer software that will convert MuseScore scores to Braille, more than doubling the number of scores available to blind musicians. But we need your support! These are the stretch goals:

$50,000: Braille version of the Open Well-Tempered Clavier 

$60,000: Braille version of the Open Goldberg Variations 

$100,000: A free web-service to automatically convert MusicXML files to Braille

$150,000: All 50,000 scores on MuseScore.com available as Braille

An awesome recording and digital score

We are creating a new digital score and studio recording of J.S. Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier (Book 1), and we're placing them in the public domain for everyone to download, own, share, and use, without any limitations.

The Recording will be distributed online in MP3, WAV, and lossless FLAC file formats. In addition, the master multi-track WAV files containing all tracks and microphones will also be made available, along with video and photos of the recording sessions.

The score will be in the MuseScore format, and if we meet our stretch goals, as a braille edition for blind musicians.

Meaningful backer rewards

Your support will allow us to record in the Teldex Studio, with Anne-Marie Sylvestre as the producer. Your support will allow us to be quite obsessive in creating a beautiful score that is as true to Bach's manuscript as we can be. Your support will allow us to do the mastering of the recording using state-of-the-art equipment to guarantee the best sound possible.

We've got some great rewards for our backers, including copies of the Double CD (PARMA Recordings' Navona Label); the printed score (GRIN Verlag edition); USB sticks with LOTS of cool files; scans of Kimiko Ishizaka's study scores with fingerings, phrasing, and analysis markings; private lessons or concerts with Kimiko Ishizaka; and VIP tickets to upcoming concerts and the CD release parties (Berlin, Paris, London, New York). To celebrate making Bach's music accessible to blind musicians, we are creating a Braille-embossed print of an original, commissioned artwork, something that both the sighted and the blind can enjoy. 

NEW: Add $20 to any pledge and receive a copy of "Blind But Now I See", the Doc Watson story. More details here.

Perhaps the nicest backer reward, however, is the dedication of one of the Preludes or Fugues. One of the 48 pieces is dedicated to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication will appear in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text.

Digital Scores

Here is a video describing the top 10 technical advantages of having your music in MuseScore format. Of course, if we succeed in our quest to create a service to convert MuseScore files into Braille scores, that would be the new #1 reason!

 A Sample: The Fugue in F-Minor

Bach's music is rich and rewarding. Listen to this a couple of times through. Let it sink in. There are 48 pieces of this caliber in the first book of the Well-Tempered Clavier. This music will accompany you for a lifetime.

The Ba©h to Bach Team

Our team consists of pianist Kimiko Ishizaka who recorded the Open Goldberg Variations to great acclaim and glowing reviews. She'll be assisted by producer Anne-Marie Sylvestre, and she'll play a Bösendorfer piano, provided by the manufacturer, that she gets to hand pick from all of their instruments. The recording will be made in the Teldex Studio, Berlin, one of the finest studios in the world. PARMA Recordings will publish and distribute the recording worldwide on the Navona Recordings label.

The score will be produced by the MuseScore team and Olivier Miquel. GRIN Verlag will publish the score in its print form.

Stay in touch!

The Open Well-Tempered Clavier will be released on our website: http://www.opengoldbergvariations.org

Updates are posted regularly to our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Open.Goldberg.Variations

We're on Twitter: @OpenGoldberg, @KimikoIshizaka, @RobertDouglass

Kimiko Ishizaka also has her own site: http://kimiko-piano.com

Our YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/OpenGoldberg/videos

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Barring natural disaster or acts of God that prevent Kimiko Ishizaka from recording, this project will succeed. We've done it before with great results, and this time around there's a bigger and stronger team working together to make this recording and score.

FAQ

  • We're dealing with Book one of Bach's Well-Tempered Clavier (BWV 846-869). Book two will have to wait for a while. We want to be obsessive about quality, and really focus on making something that will really be eternal and special. For that reason we've elected to not bite off more than our team can chew. That said, it is still nearly two hours of gorgeous music!

    Last updated:
  • We want to have the score finished in the first part of 2014 (by March). Kimiko goes to the Teldex Studio at the end of March, beginning of April. The big CD release party and concerts are targeted for September/October 2014.

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    Early access to some of the best raw takes from the studio recording. Remember - everyone gets the digital score and recording when this project succeeds. Thank you for your support!

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    181 backers

    Double CD of Bach's "Well-Tempered Clavier", Book 1, on PARMA Recording's Navona Label. Want more than one copy? No problem. Just enter a multiple of $25!

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    Printed Score of Bach's "Well-Tempered Clavier", Book 1, published by GRIN Verlag. Want more than one copy? No problem. Just enter a multiple of $25!

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    Double CD & Printed Score

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    Concert in Leiden, Netherlands: On November 23, 2013, at 20:15, in the Lokhorstkerk, Leiden, Kimiko Ishizaka will perform Chopin and Bach for the Bachkoor-Holland. Attend this concert, and receive the Double CD of the Open Well-Tempered Clavier.

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    USB stick with LOTS of files: The 48 pieces of the Well-Tempered Clavier recording in lossless FLAC, WAV, high bitrate MP3; the MuseScore score; the MuseScore software; WAV files of the Master Mix with all tracks from all microphones; HD video from the studio sessions; photos from the recording sessions and 12 concert tour ============================= Double CD & Printed Score

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    Braille embossed print of commissioned art, to celebrate making Bach accessible, as well as free. ============================= USB stick with LOTS of files: The 48 pieces of the Well-Tempered Clavier recording in lossless FLAC, WAV, high bitrate MP3; the MuseScore score; the MuseScore software; WAV files of the Master Mix with all tracks from all microphones; HD video from the studio sessions; photos from the recording sessions and 12 concert tour; Double CD & Printed Score

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    A high-quality scan of Kimiko Ishizaka's markings (fingerings, phrasing, analysis) of one Prelude and Fugue + 2 VIP tickets to any Kimiko Ishizaka concert in 2014 (including Carnegie Hall) ============================= USB stick with LOTS of files + Double CD & Printed Score

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    Dedicate 869 B Minor Fugue: Dedicate this Fugue to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication appears in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Furthermore, since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text. ============================= Double CD + Printed Score

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    Dedicate 853 Eb Minor Prelude: Dedicate this Prelude to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication appears in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Furthermore, since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text. ============================= Double CD + Printed Score

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    Dedicate 857 F Minor Fugue: Dedicate this Fugue to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication appears in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Furthermore, since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text. ============================= Double CD + Printed Score

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    Dedicate 849 C# Minor Fugue: Dedicate this Fugue to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication appears in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Furthermore, since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text. ============================= Double CD + Printed Score

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    6 backers Limited (30 left of 36)

    Dedicate a Prelude or a Fugue: One of the 48 pieces is dedicated to someone or something you love or honor. This dedication appears in all published formats of the work, including the printed score and commercial CD. Furthermore, since this is a public domain work, and will be stored on all of the important internet archives and libraries, your dedication will exist and be remembered for as long as humans listen to music. This is your chance to do something eternal for someone you love. Dedications are typically 1-3 lines of text. ============================= A high-quality scan of Kimiko Ishizaka's markings (fingerings, phrasing, analysis) of one Prelude and Fugue + 2 VIP tickets to any Kimiko Ishizaka concert in 2014 (including Carnegie Hall) + USB stick with LOTS of files + Double CD + Printed Score

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    High-quality scan of Kimiko Ishizaka's markings (fingerings, phrasing, analysis) for the entire Well-Tempered Clavier (Book 1). That's 10 years of analysis and preparation recorded meticulously on the music of every prelude and fugue. + 2 VIP tickets to one of the release parties for the CD recording (Berlin / Paris / London / New York) + Enjoy a 30 minute Skype piano lesson with Kimiko Ishizaka (You're not a pianist? Give the lesson as a gift!) ============================= Braille embossed print of commissioned art, to celebrate making Bach accessible, as well as free + Dedicate a Prelude or a Fugue: One of the 48 pieces is dedicated to someone or something you love or honor. + 2 VIP tickets to one of the release parties for the CD recording (Berlin / Paris / London / New York) + 2 VIP tickets to any Kimiko Ishizaka concert in 2014 (including Carnegie Hall) + USB stick with LOTS of files + Double CD + Printed Score

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    A public or private concert in your city or home, performed by Kimiko Ishizaka + A 60 minute piano lesson with Kimiko Ishizaka in person (also makes a nice gift!) (lesson in conjunction with concert, concert in EU, UK, or NA) + "Associate Producer" credits on the CD recording ============================= Braille embossed print of commissioned art, to celebrate making Bach accessible, as well as free + High-quality scan of Kimiko Ishizaka's markings (fingerings, phrasing, analysis) for the entire Well-Tempered Clavier (Book 1). + Dedicate a Prelude or a Fugue: One of the 48 pieces is dedicated to someone or something you love or honor. + 2 VIP tickets to one of the release parties for the CD recording (Berlin / Paris / London / New York) + 2 VIP tickets to any Kimiko Ishizaka concert in 2014 (including Carnegie Hall) + USB stick with LOTS of files + Double CD + Printed Score

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  • Pledge $10,000 or more
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    The original artwork that forms the basis of the Braille embossed print that we create to celebrate making Bach accessible, as well as free. ============================= A public or private concert in your city or home, performed by Kimiko Ishizaka + A 60 minute piano lesson with Kimiko Ishizaka in person (also makes a nice gift!) (lesson in conjunction with concert, concert in EU, UK, or NA) + "Associate Producer" credits on the CD recording + Braille embossed print of commissioned art, to celebrate making Bach accessible, as well as free + High-quality scan of Kimiko Ishizaka's markings (fingerings, phrasing, analysis) for the entire Well-Tempered Clavier (Book 1). + Dedicate a Prelude or a Fugue: One of the 48 pieces is dedicated to someone or something you love or honor. + 2 VIP tickets to one of the release parties for the CD recording (Berlin / Paris / London / New York) + 2 VIP tickets to any Kimiko Ishizaka concert in 2014 (including Carnegie Hall) + USB stick with LOTS of files + Double CD + Printed Score

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- (50 days)