W.F. Bach: Sinfonias

W.F. Bach: Sinfonias
Composer Wilhelm Friedemann Bach
Artist Kammerorchester C.P.E. Bach
Hartmut Haenchen conductor
Format 1 CD
Cat. number 94690
EAN code 5028421946900
Release May 2014

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About this release

The eldest of Johann Sebastian Bach's many sons, Wilhelm Friedemann Bach was very possibly the most gifted of them all. Trained by his father, he cultivated a highly sensitive and refined musical language, as well as a bold and inventive style that was far ahead of his time. Yet his music is often misunderstood and underappreciated. As conductor Hartmut Haenchen explains in his liner notes, one of the reasons for this is that much of W.F. Bach's output has been destroyed or lost. This disc includes three world premiere recordings of sinfonias from Wilhelm Friedemann's cantatas, reconstructed and arranged by Haenchen after meticulous research into the whereabouts and condition of the original manuscripts.

The works recorded here are a showcase for W.F. Bach's astonishing versatility and the variety of musical idioms that he employs. The 'Dissonant' Sinfonia and the sinfonia from the cantata Fk88, for example, demonstrate a daring and unprecedented approach to harmony and counterpoint, while the sinfonia from Fk92 is more subtle and restrained, reminiscent of C.P.E. Bach's early Berlin Symphonies, but with a far more sophisticated harmonic structure. Also featured is the Suite in G minor, originally attributed to Johann Sebastian Bach.

Other information:
- This release contains orchestral works by Wilhelm Friedemann Bach, Johann Sebastian’s eldest son, and possibly his most gifted.
- Wilhelm Friedemann’s musical language is sometimes far ahead of its time, in the use of daring harmonies and unusual counterpoint, bold and imaginative.
- Sadly most of the composer’s works have been lost, hence his relative obscurity. The works on this CD have been reconstructed by conductor Hartmut Haenchen: 3 sinfonias to lost cantatas and an orchestral suite, testimony of and original and independent mind.
- Excellent performances by the Kammerorchester C.P.E. Bach in spirit of Historically Informed Performance, conducted by Hartmut Haenchen, who also wrote the liner notes.
- “This collection is a stunning testimony to Wilhelm Friedemann's talents, and the performances are marked by vitality and intensity” (American Record Guide).

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Sinfonia in F Major, Fk 67 “Dissonant”: I. Vivace
  2. Sinfonia in F Major, Fk 67 “Dissonant”: II. Andante
  3. Sinfonia in F Major, Fk 67 “Dissonant”: III. Allegro
  4. Sinfonia in F Major, Fk 67 “Dissonant”: IV. Menuet No. 1 - Menuet No. 2
  5. Sinfonia in F Major, Fk 88 (Un poco allegro)
  6. Sinfonia in D Minor, Fk 65 (Adagio – Allegro e forte)
  7. Sinfonia in D Major, Fk 64: I. Allegro e maestoso
  8. Sinfonia in D Major, Fk 64: II. Andante
  9. Sinfonia in D Major, Fk 64: III. Vivace
  10. Sinfonia in D Major, Fk 91
  11. Sinfonia in G Major, Fk 92 (Allegro assai)
  12. Suite in G Minor, BWV 1070: I. Larghetto - Un poco allegro
  13. Suite in G Minor, BWV 1070: II. Torneo
  14. Suite in G Minor, BWV 1070: III. Aria. Adagio
  15. Suite in G Minor, BWV 1070: IV. Menuetto alternativo - Trio
  16. Suite in G Minor, BWV 1070: V. Capriccio