J.S. Bach

Recommended (or not) Recordings

Sonate per il cembalo

Main Performer
or Conductor:
Andreas Staier
Individual Works:Keyboard sonata in D minor, BWV 964 (after BWV 1003)
Keyboard sonata in A minor, BWV 965 (after Reinken's "Hortus Musicus, Nos. 1-5")
Keyboard sonata in C major, BWV 966 (after Reinken's "Hortus Musicus, Nos. 11-15", completed Staier)
Keyboard sonata in G major, BWV 968 (after BWV 1005, completed Staier)
Fugue in B flat, BWV 954 (after Reinken's "Hortus Musicus, No. 6")
Format:Compact Disc
Record Label:Teldec
Catalog Number:3984-21461-2
Year Released/Recorded:1997
Total Playing Time:76:33
Comments:Simon Crouch said:

I'm not a great fan of harpsichord recordings in general but Andreas Staier's new disc of Bach keyboard sonatas on Teldec is one of the exceptions to my rule! Teldec provides a fine recording of a fine instrument and Staier provides us with excellent performances, with tasteful and interesting registrations. The works performed are the keyboard sonatas BWV 964 and 968, which are transcriptions of the violin sonatas BWV 1003 and 1005 respectively, and the sonatas and fugue BWV 965, 966 and 954 after Reinken's "Hortus Musicus". In fact, Staier does more than just perform: BWV 968 is a transcription of the opening movement of BWV 1005 only, Staier has completed the transcription.

Teldec's packaging contains the "Bach 2000" logo indicating that this is one of the first new recordings aimed at fleshing out Teldec's catalogue to be able to release a complete Bach edition later this year. Indeed, it's worth pointing out that this release draws its material from the dustier corners of the BWV - After all, the authenticity of the violin sonata transcriptions has been questioned and the Reinken transcriptions, although authentic, don't draw on original Bach material. So, if you're a "completist" like me, then this release is a dream. If not, I can still recommend it to you, simply for the quality of the playing!

Jan Hanford said:

Because these works are so rarely recorded, I was particularly curious to hear them. The fact they are transcriptions, some of which are of music not by Bach, made me even more interested. It's important to remember that Bach wasn't just a composer, he was a musician with a capital M. He was interested in and ecxited by other music of his time and adapted it for his own use and enjoyment. This recording is a portion of that part of his life and what a wonderful and beautiful portion it is.

In addition to the music and transcriptions themselves, Andreas Staier's performance is really remarkable. This recording made me a new fan. His flawless articulation and use of varied stops on the harpsichord make this recording even more enjoyable. Also, his finishing some of the transcriptions is a wonderful contribution to the Bach repertoire. This is the lighter side of Bach that isn't heard enough and I'm really excited to see the exceptional musicianship and scholarhips that went into making this recording.

Tired of the "more of the same" Bach harpsichord recordings? Then get this one! It is a delight and highly recommended.

Acknowledgements:Thank you to the following for submitting this recording and for your comments:
  • Simon Crouch
And from the collection of Jan Hanford.
Date First Submitted:08/09/1999