J.S. Bach’s English Suite No. 2 in A minor, BWV 807, reflects the period in Weimar around 1715 when the composer was experimenting with the alternating ritornello and solo principles of the Italian concerto grosso with increasing imagination and character. In the Prelude, the sections are clearly and ambitiously demarcated in a brilliant hybrid of fugue, two-part invention and Italian virtuoso concerto of the kind Bach had mastered and developed after his recent exposure to Vivaldi.
The vitality of the sprung rhythms and inquisitive motivic dialogue is meat and drink for any ‘conversing’ duo, especially in this arrangement where the harmonic web is given some discreet additional material. The players here need to find a comfortable tempo in which energy, clarity and control can happily convey the irresistible conversational exchanges between trumpet and piano.
- Trumpet in C
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