Arts of Fugue

Arts of Fugue

Performative Lecture and solo piano performance of Bach fuga

Italian Cultural Institute Stockholm

Gärdesgatan 14

18:00 – 20:00

 Booking required:




Sara Giannini (in Italian)

Lecture: Where Music meets Science (in English)

Dr. Laszlo Harmat

Department of Clinical Neuroscience

Karolinska Institutet

Music is a phenomenon that strongly connect to our life and behavior. Our words is not enough to describe our feelings after a wonderful concert or any musical experience. Fugue is a contrapuntal composition technique in two or more voices built on a subject (theme) that is introduced at the beginning in imitation (repetition at different pitches) and recurs frequently in the course of the composition. This is the one of the most complicated composition technique in western music that comes from renaissance imitation works. This polyphony in the baroque era reach the highest quality and richness in works of Johann Sebastian Bach.  The Arts Fugue and The Musical Offering is one of the best composition in contrapuntal polyphony. What is the theoretical  background of this technique? How meets fugue with math and neuroscience? My lecture  try to make some suggestions to answer these questions. I will also make some parallel thought about polyphony and the nature of consciousness.  I will introduce some fugues and the audience can enjoy some beautiful piece from J.S. Bach on piano. Professional pianist will be invited to this performance.

Musical performance of three Bach fuga

Anna Buchenhorst

Royal Opera Stockholm


Anna Buchenhorst is a full-time professional pianist at the Royal Opera in Stockholm and tours internationally with the Royal Swedish Ballet. Her work in the orchestra has included the great classics as well as lesser known ballet works by Stravinsky, Schnittke and harpsichord parts by Händel and Bach. She has worked together with leading European choreographers and ballet teachers of our time, among them Mats Ek, as well as playing for celebrities such as Mikhail Baryshnikov, John Neumeier and Dame Beryl Grey. Anna has performed together with Stockholm’s Royal Court Orchestra as a soloist in various piano concertos choreographed for the ballet, for example Shostakovich’s First Piano Concerto, Poulenc’s Double Concerto, Martinů’s Concerto for Two Orchestras, Piano and Timpani, and the virtuoso piece Grand Tarantella by American composer L.M. Gottschalk. She has worked with conductors such as Daniel Harding – in Bach’s Brandenburg Concerto No.3 together with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra – Gary Berkson, David Björkman and Josep Caballé Domenech. She has also performed Haydn’s Piano Concerto in D-major, playing and conducting from the keyboard, at the Academy of Music and Drama in Gothenburg, Her vast experience in the dance field has broadened her musical spectra also as a soloist and ensemble player. A dedicated chamber musician, Anna regularly performs together with colleagues of the Royal Court Orchestra as part of the Royal Opera’s lunch concert series.

László Harmat is Postdoctoral research fellow at the Karolinska Institute, Department of Neuroscience. László Harmat was born in southern Hungary (Mohács) in 1972. He graduated as a music teacher at Esterhazy Károly Teacher`s Training School in Eger, Hungary, and subsequently worked as a music teacher for several  years in Budapest. He also worked as a lecturer in music education at the International  Petö Institute between 2001- 2007. Furthermore, he took his degree in psychology the University of Szeged in 2005, and his Ph.D. in 2010 at the Semmelweis University, Institute of Behavioral Sciences, and became an assistant professor in psychology at the Semmelweis University in 2009. Laszlo’s main interest is to measure the psychophysiological and cognitive effects of music listening and musical training. From 2007 he has repeatedly collaborated with prof. Töres Theorell (Stress Research Institute, Stockholm University) and prof. Dr Ullén (Karolinska Institutet). In 2011 he was invited to Stockholm to participate in the research project `Man making music` as a postdoc.

Sara Giannini is an independent curator and researcher currently based in Amsterdam. Her interest lies on the shifts of meaning, representation and systems of knowledge in and between different contexts and temporalities. From 2010 to 2013 she worked as researcher and curator for the ZKM project “Global Art and Museum“ where she was assistant curator of the large-scale exhibitions The Global Contemporary. Art Worlds After 1989 (ZKM Museum for Contemporary Art), Nothing to Declare? World Maps of Art since ‘89 (Akademie der Kuenste, Berlin) and co-curated the documentation project “Room of Histories“ with Hans Belting. She is currently a PhD candidate at the Leiden University with a research on “The Politics of Inclusion”. Within the artistic and research network Vision Forum, she runs experimental and participative long-term projects such as VOLUME and OuUnPo. She earned a BA in cultural studies from the University of Ferrara (IT) in 2007 and a MA in semiotics from the University of Bologna (IT) in 2010.