CDU hosts world renowned Bach scholar 


Dr Yo Tomita, guest lecturer at the recent ‘Which Bach?’ Symposium, hosted by CDU, provided insight into the compositional origins of some of the chamber works of Johann Sebastian Bach.

Dr Tomita presented a number of workshops as part of the symposium, including musicology seminar, ‘Bach research in the 21st Century’, and a pianist masterclass, discussing selected compositions.

A graduate of the Musashino Academia Musicae in Tokyo, Dr Tomita joined the staff at Queen’s University Belfast in March 1995 as Research Fellow. He was reappointed as Lecturer in 2000, and promoted to Reader in 2001. In 2002, he spent his time in the Riemenschneider Bach Institute in Ohio as the Martha Goldsworthy Arnold Fellow.

Since 2000, he has served as a member of the organising committee of the Biennial International Conference on Baroque Music, and in 2005 joined the editorial board members of the Journal of Musicological Research.

Dr Tomita has become a world-leading Bach researcher, in particular because of his work on the manuscript sources of Bach’s Well-Tempered Clavier Book II (WTC II), tracking the history of these manuscripts and their dissemination from Johann Sebastian himself and his wife Anna Magdalena, and through to Bach’s sons and students.

Dr Tomita’s achievements in this area of research are outstanding and extraordinary considering that, for many reasons, the Well-Tempered Clavier is possibly the most intensely studied and revered collection of keyboard pieces in Western music. He is currently working on a revised edition of WTC II for Henle publishers and a two-volume monograph for Ashgate Publishing.

Dr Tomita’s appearance at the Which? Bach Symposium was part of a series of seminar-workshops and musicology papers he is presenting during April in Melbourne, Darwin, Sydney, Canberra and Newcastle.