|Author||David Warren Paul|
|Title||Fantasy on the Theme B-A-C-H|
|Type of work||Literary novel|
|Brief description||(see Summary)|
|Existing rights sales||None|
Thomas Braxton, an organist, aches for a career of public performances and recording contracts. His position at St. Annes Church cannot contain his ambitions, and he jumps at the opportunity to give a recital at the Washington Cathedral. Against his better judgment, however, he agrees to play a composition that he has never been able to master, Franz Liszts Prelude and Fugue on B-A-C-H, based on four musical notes that spell the name of the earlier master.
In the six months during which Braxton struggles with this piece, he wanders into another world, a world that begins with a dark fantasy about a mysterious man Braxton sees one day in the slums of East Baltimore. This fantasy world is far removed from the beauty and purity of music; its a violent domain of derelicts, prostitutes, and pimps. Once he enters this world, Thomas Braxton cannot escape from it.
In the comfortable society of St. Annes Church, Braxtons musical abilities bring him respect. His friends include Archie Graham, a young, radical clergyman, and Clark Philby, the choir director. This outer life of Braxtons comes unglued, however, the more he broods over Mara, a lost love.
Seeking refuge from thoughts of Mara, he plunges into fantasies and dreams about Franz Liszt. In visions, Liszt advises Braxton on the correct interpretation of his music. In reality, Braxtons obsession about the profligate personal life of the 19th-century composer draws him into an irresistible imitation of Liszt, as Braxton falls into simultaneous sexual affairs with two young sisters, Judy and Camille.
It is when his real life and his fantasy life converge that Braxtons story reaches its climax. A series of unsolved murders in East Baltimore coincides with the approach of Thomas Braxtons big recital, and the organists inner lifehis dreams and fantasies about the mysterious street personbecomes hopelessly intertwined with his outer life.
© 1997 by David Warren Paul. All rights reserved.