J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

Art of Fugue

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Canadian Brass
Soloists:Ronald Romm: B-flat & E-flat Trumpets, B-flat Piccolo Trumpet, Flugelhorn
Frederic Mills: B-flat & E-flat Trumpet, B-flat Piccolo Trumpet
David Ohanian: French Horn
Eugene Watts: Euphonium
Charles Daellenbach: Tuba
Individual Works:Art of the Fugue (except four canons), BWV 1080 BWV 1080
Choral Prelude "Vor deinen Thron tret' ich hiermit," BWV 668
(Arranged for brass by Arthur Frackenpohl)
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:CBS Masterworks
Catalog Number:MK 44501
Year Released/Recorded:1987
Total Playing Time:56:42
Comments:Jeff Carroll said:

The completely digital recording process of this recording really shows - it's wonderfully clear and the expressiveness of the musicians really comes through. The cleaner sounds of the brass allow a better appreciation for the complexity of the composition of the Art of the Fugue than any other
recording I have heard, while maintaining and easy to listen to "simple" sound.

Tim Smith said:

Omits the four canons...otherwise excellent recording in all respects. If you are into authentic performance practice you might prefer Reinhard Goebel and the Musica Antiqua Koln recording (Archiv 431-704-2).

Thomas Hubeart said:

The Canadian Brass plays this music with great zest, and the tonal variety afforded by the trumpets and other brass is more welcome in this music than the comparative aural monotony of organ-only performances. Still, the disk's packaging is deceptive in not noting anywhere that the four canons (Contrapunctus XII-XV in Graeser's score; different eds. enumerate these differently) are missing. This earns the disk somewhat of a downgrading in my opinion, despite the sparkle of the playing.

Adam N. La Spata said:

As I am a horn player myself and having played in many brass ensembles as well as an admirer of Bach, I am naturally drawn to this recording. Upon closer examination, I found this to be even better than I thought. As usual, the Brass prove themselves to be peak performers in all realms. For those who are musical purists, let it be known that the Brass are completely justified in peforming this work, since Bach purposely avoided scoring it for a specific instrumentation, so that his genius and mastery may be seen throughout all generations.

Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • Jeff Carroll
  • Tim Smith
  • Thomas Hubeart
Date First Submitted:04/12/1998