Catapulting into Classical

A headlong leap into music, history, and composing

Composers’ Cats, Cat Composers, and Fugues for Friday

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Drawing of cat walking on music manuscript

It’s almost Caturday, people, almost the weekend.  So let’s have some fun!

Wait, not a cat fan?  OK, here’s a Fugue for Friday for you (free sheet music available; see link).

In researching the post on Borodin’s cats, I found some fun stuff for the cat fans among you.

Here you can see the history of classical music in cat GIFs.

Here is a collection of composers and their favorite felines.

And then (as if that weren’t enough) cats that look like famous composers.

As you could imagine from the scene at Borodin’s house, cats probably regularly “helped” him as he wrote and played his music.  This kind of help has been offered for a long time:  in the 15th century, a cat left its mark on a medieval manuscript.

And then, in the 1700s, according to legend, Domenico Scarlatti’s cat Pulcinella walked across the keyboard (which was said to be a common occurrence) prompting him to write a fugue on the cat’s theme.  While Scarlatti himself never called it the Cat Fugue, the Fugue in G Minor (K. 30, L. 499) has been known by that nickname ever since.

You might also enjoy this jazzy adaptation of Scarlatti’s cat fugue by Greg Anderson, performed here by Anderson and Roe.

And if this hasn’t been enough frivolity for you, here’s the Nyan Cat Fugue, featuring triple invertible counterpoint and humorous commentary.

Have a relaxing weekend!  Here is a photo of composer Amy Beach enjoying tea with a friend and a cat.

Composer Amy Beach (right), Marcella Craft, and cat warily eyeing photographer H. Wiedenmann, 1913. Courtesy University of New Hampshire Library.

Composer Amy Beach (right), Marcella Craft, and cat warily eyeing photographer H. Wiedenmann, 1913. Courtesy University of New Hampshire Library.

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Photo attribution:  Photo of Amy Beach, Marcella Craft, and cat from the University of New Hampshire Library, Special Collections, the Amy Cheney Beach collection.  Photo taken February 14, 1913 by H. Wiedenmann, Munich.  This photo available at Flicker:  https://www.flickr.com/photos/unhlibrary/15594465084/in/album-72157650163621065/

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2 thoughts on “Composers’ Cats, Cat Composers, and Fugues for Friday

  1. Way fun- thanks, Chris! Sure have been enjoying the postings this summer.

    Tom

    Liked by 1 person

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