Open Goldberg Variations Raises $16,000 in 20 Days for "Open Source Bach"

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Strong support signals a new era in funding for classical music projects

Open Goldberg Variations logo

Open Goldberg Variations

People are increasingly aware of issues around copyright and licensing, and this shows they're eager to expand the body of works in the public domain.

Just a few days after J.S. Bach's 326th birthday on 21 March, the Open Goldberg Variations project has achieved its first fundraising milestone, raising more than $16,000 in just 20 days on Kickstarter.com. The project's aim is to create a new score and studio recording of J.S. Bach's masterpiece, the Goldberg Variations, and donate them to the public domain. http://kck.st/opengoldberg

Bach's Goldberg Variations were written over 270 years ago, but since that time top quality public domain scores and recordings have been all but impossible to find. The Open Goldberg Variations project will change this, thanks to the generous funding made possible by Kickstarter.com, by creating the first open source version of the score. The project will spotlight award-winning pianist Kimiko Ishizaka, who will perform the variations in a top German sound studio to produce a definitive contemporary recording of the highest professional standard.    

Co-founder Robert Douglass believes that the public's eagerness to get involved is indicative of a sea change: "This level of interest and support signals a new era in funding for classical music projects. People are increasingly aware of issues around copyright and licensing, and this shows they're eager to expand the body of works in the public domain."

The project is the first fruit of a partnership between the Open Goldberg Project and MuseScore, the company behind the MuseScore open source music notation software.

All three partners are volunteering time and resources to create new public domain works: scores, recordings and additional materials. The $16,000 raised so far will cover costs, including studio hire and the production of physical media (CDs and printed scores) for Kickstarter backers pledging $25 or more.

Open Goldberg Project is a U.S. based non-profit dedicated to promoting public domain and openly licensed musical and artistic works. http://www.opengoldbergvariations.org

MuseScore BVBA is a Belgian company promoting the development and usage of MuseScore, the premiere free and open source music notation editing program. http://musescore.com

For further information or interviews contact Robert Douglass, +1 517 639 0204, or write to robert(at)opengoldbergvariations(dot)org

Open Goldberg Variations on Kickstarter.com: http://kck.st/opengoldberg

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