I am referring to playing fugues on the piano. I have been taught that I can roughly think of it in terms of SATB (soprano, alto, tenor, bass), and also that the top voice should, in general, be emphasized a bit more (louder, noticeably sticking out, even if only subtly or a little bit so). Is this correct?
And what if, say, there are two voices in the treble clef, but the top voice “goes below”, i.e has notes lower in pitch than the bottom voice? Should one still emphasize the top voice so that it is still more clearly heard than the bottom voice? For example, in the example below (the piece is in Ab major I think), assuming the top voice is always denoted by stems pointing up and the bottom voice by stems pointing down, should I sound out the Db and the lower Bb so that they are heard more clearly than the higher Bb and G, respectively? (treble clef, second measure, second two 8th notes). (Excerpt from the last movement of Beethoven’s Sonata No. 31, Op. 110)
In general, should I play each note in a particular voice with equal force? I mean, barring when there are accidentals, accents, or obvious downbeats and such: let’s say it’s a smooth, uniform string of 16th notes going down the piano register, like a descending scale. I made a kinda crude example below. Again, assuming the stems pointing up are top voice and stems pointing down are bottom voice. If the 16th notes in the second measure are the top voice and the same 16th notes in the third measure in the bottom voice, should I play them subtly differently? (This is probably not the best example, sorry.) Should the determination of the volume, or emphasis of phrasing, of notes in a fugue be more a function of the voice it is in (SATB) or the pitch (which octave/area it is on the piano register)? Does this even make sense? I’m sorry if this is a silly question.