Bach the brandenburg concertos. Bach's Best 'Brandenburg' Concertos : NPR 2019-02-27

Bach the brandenburg concertos Rating: 7,4/10 615 reviews

J.S. Bach Brandenburg Concertos 1

bach the brandenburg concertos

Several sets of original instrument recordings continued the trend by combining formidable scholarship with captivating performance. This is not a Brandenburg set that sets out to score points, and all that is needed from us is to sit back and enjoy its relaxed, celebratory spirit. This is not a Brandenburg set that seeks to score points, and all that is needed from us is to sit back and enjoy its relaxed, celebratory spirit. This is a failure of understanding, not the inevitable product of the tools used. Famed primarily as a deeply poetic, if technically insecure, pianist, Cortot also was a pioneering conductor, responsible for the French premieres of Wagner operas and many contemporary works.

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bach the brandenburg concertos

Bach's dedication to the Margrave was dated 24 March 1721. Bach presumably played the solo part himself; Philipp Spitta considered the part to have demanded finger dexterity that no one else possessed at the time. The spiritual significance of the number three in Christian theology was surely not lost on Bach, a devout Lutheran. In the Brandenburg Five version of the concerto Bach reworked and expanded an additional cello part from the violone part of the earlier version, and the violone, now playing in 16-foot pitch, gets a full-fledged ripieno part. This new recording, made with an ensemble hand-picked for the job, is a 60th-birthday present to himself, and is just what such a project should be: talented musicians relishing each other's company in music of truly inspiring greatness. The mournful melody is not only traded in canon between the oboe and violino piccolo but descends all the way down into the bass to augment its standard role as pure accompaniment. The third movement served as the theme song for William F.

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Classical Notes

bach the brandenburg concertos

All the evidence suggests that these virtuosic Brandenburg concertos perfectly matched the talents of the musicians on hand in Coethen. Marchand fled before the competition could take place, apparently scared off in the face of Bach's great reputation for virtuosity and. He further insisted that even though Bach set everything out precisely, a valid performance demands tonal and poetic imagination. The general role of the harpsichord in baroque music was to fill in harmonies. Do you go for a radical interpretation set to make people jump, laugh or recoil in surprise? Indeed, Rifkin claims that the Margrave had a small orchestra that lacked both the instruments and sufficiently skilled players to cope with the demands of the Brandenburgs' diverse and difficult parts.

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The best recordings of JS Bach's Brandenburg Concertos

bach the brandenburg concertos

From that perspective, Bach's magnificent interplay of diverse musical elements can be seen as a reflection of his pervasive belief in the Divine harmony of the universe. Indeed, performances with full string sections, or even large chamber ensembles, no matter how well rehearsed, tend to blur the precisely articulated interplay of buoyant rhythms and swamp the harpsichord, whose bright plucked overtones need to emerge from the depth of the strings. After all, it's only human nature to seek the comfort of returning to and dwelling in the familiar. Perhaps as a function of its historical importance, in his accompanying notes, Harnoncourt took great pains to justify his efforts to recreate an authentic Baroque sound. Yet Bach ingeniously creates a compelling and complex aural image of irresistible gaiety that arises out of and is enriched by its seemingly melancholy components.

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The best recordings of JS Bach's Brandenburg Concertos

bach the brandenburg concertos

A 1967 set by Karl Richter and the Münchener Bach-Orchester Archiv followed suit with a larger ensemble, richer sound and somewhat quicker pacing. His seminal 1954 Interpretation of Music combined searching scholarship and fervent advocacy to urge both performers and listeners to understand the sonorities and styles of the past. The pensive violin improvisation which links the two movements of No 3 is surely a miscalculation, feeling like more of a hold-up than it need be; more lastingly refreshing to my ears were the subtle relaxations of tension in the first movement of No 6, these days so often given the hard-drive treatment. The sections of the first movement are closely integrated into a continuous flow of vigorous thrust, led by the two violas in tight canon a mere eighth-note apart during each of the six ritornellos, blending into a lively dialogue with the gambas during the five episodes, all over a persistent quarter-note continuo rhythm. As if to emphasize its import, the other instruments don't boldly lead up to the lengthy solo display as they would in later concertos, but rather slow down and drop off, as if respectfully bowing, turning away and receding before the royal presence of the majestic harpsichord.

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The Brandenburg Concertos

bach the brandenburg concertos

Indeed, Boyd notes that Bach didn't exploit its higher range and that its reduced volume is overwhelmed by the large ensemble. In the concertino passages the part is ; in the ripieno passages it has a part and plays continuo. Klemperer seems as straight-forward as could be imagined, yet his trademark sobriety serves to demonstrate that these works are so filled with intrinsic merit as to need no extra interpretive help to communicate their message to modern listeners. Berlin: Evangelische Verlagsanstalt for , 1975. Although the concerto proper appears to conclude at that point, Bach adds a set of four dances in which all members of the ensemble are displayed — a minuet for the full band is heard four times, enfolding a trio for oboes and bassoon, a Polacca for strings absent from the 1713 sinfonia version and a second trio for horns and oboes. Konzert D dur: Brandenburgisches Nr. Bach also knew two top Dresden violinists: , the who had invited the composer to Dresden, and.

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J. S. Bach

bach the brandenburg concertos

In the modern era these works have been performed by with the string parts each played by a number of players, under the batons of, for example, and. The second movement, labeled adagio, consists of two chords forming a bare Phrygian cadence of the type that often links a slow middle movement in the relative minor to a vivid major-key finale, but with an intriguing sense of open expectancy. The concerto is well suited throughout to showing off the qualities of a fine harpsichord and the virtuosity of its player, but especially in the lengthy solo to the first movement. Like Furtwängler, approached Bach philosophically, yet more personally. Bach St 131 are manuscript copies of the concerto realised during the composer's lifetime, in 1721 and around the 1730s respectively, after the autographs of the final version. Instrumentation The piece has two groups of instruments: The Concertino:- the soloist group. The Largo from the Sonata for Violin and Obbligato Harpsichord in G major, , has also been used.

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Bach's Best 'Brandenburg' Concertos : NPR

bach the brandenburg concertos

The piece uses fugal exposition which has a structure of a fugal subject and answer and is based on a a German dance. This concerto makes use of a popular chamber music ensemble of the time flute, violin, and harpsichord , which Bach used on its own for the middle movement. The first movement has the structure of an elaborate , in the style of an early 18th-century Italian violin concerto movement, but with the harpsichord in the leading role among the soloists. In one of the many bitter ironies of music history, Johann Sebastian Bach's six Brandenburg Concertos are now his most popular work and an ideal entrée to his vital and variegated art, especially for those who mistakenly dismiss his 300-year old music as boring and irrelevant, yet Bach himself may never have heard them — nor did anyone else for over a century after his death. A typical concerto movement in this Italian style of solo concerto as opposed to concerto formats not centred around one or more soloists such as the opened with a ritornello, followed by a solo passage called episode, after which a tutti brings back a variant of the ritornello, followed by further alternating solo and tutti passages, the movement being concluded by the ritornello.

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bach the brandenburg concertos

Exceptionally rich and atmospheric recorded sound, too. In such familiar works even the smallest changes to melodic figuration, rhythm and articulation stand out, but best of all is the unbelievably jaunty countermelody which originally accompanied the horns in the second Trio of No. The extended harpsichord solo of the first movement in the concerto's final version adds more imitations of typical violin solo techniques. The typical Italian violino principale violin soloist being combined with a typical French traversière in the also seems to indicate Bach's aim to unite different backgrounds in the concerto, but without making it so crude that these instruments would perform in their respective national styles. The many instances of five-part writing in the concerto's final movement may be seen as another approach with a typical French connotation in the early 18th century. The tutti passages of these concertos, that is where the whole orchestra joins in, were characterised by a theme which was often quite independent of the thematic material developed by the soloist s. While none of these seems wholly satisfactory, they all present intriguing attempts to surmount the vexing snag posed by Bach.

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The Brandenburg Concertos

bach the brandenburg concertos

He catalogues the different sonorities of the instruments Bach composed for — overall, they were quieter, sharper, more colorful, with richer overtones and more distinctive sonorities; in particular, the harpsichord was louder, more intense and occupied the central place in ensembles. In this movement the concertato violin no longer doubles the ripieno violin in tutti passages according to the Italian practice, instead the ripieno violin is mostly doubled by the flute in the tuttis: it is a French practice with the traverso at that time also being a French novelty to have a woodwind instrument double the highest string part. So, too, with Britten, Munchinger and Karajan, who adds his trademark gloss and precision to a richer, massed sonority that breathes ease and serenity, especially in the string concertos s 3 and 6. There had been recordings of individual Brandenburg Concertos the earliest seem to have been by Goosens and the Royal Albert Hall Orchestra in 1923 and Höberg and the Berlin State Opera Orchestra in 1925, both, curiously, of the Third. This movement is surprising for the Baroque era as the harpsichord has a dual role. The violone part of the early version of the concerto breaks off after the first movement, leaving uncertain whether it was intended to perform only in the outer movements or also in the middle movement: it is possible that in this version the violone reinforced the continuo bass-line in the tuttis.

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