A Treasure For All ~ The Brandenburg Concertos

The Brandenburg Concertos. One of the great masterpieces of Bach’s repertoire and they were unrecognized and un-paid in their day. When Johann Sebastian Bach presented the collection of six works to the man he dedicated them to, Christian Ludwig (the younger brother of King Frederick I of Prussia), he got no thanks and hardly any recognition.

These six concertos were composed in 1721, maybe earlier, and were named, quite simply, six concerts à plusieurs instruments (six concertos for many instruments). It is thought that their happy and light mood was caused because they were composed in one of the happier periods of Bach’s life. He was then the music director in a small town and was enlarging his musical repertoire rapidly. Continue reading

Minuet in G Major

This simple piece of music, found in the Anna Magdalena Notebook, is a simple, but beautiful piece of baroque music. Anna Magdalena was Bach’s second wife, with whom he had thirteen children. There are two Anna Magdalena Notebooks, which were compiled by Anna and her husband. The first (1722) is composed of works by Bach. The second notebook (1725) contains works not only by Bach, but also by other composers of that time. Minuet in G Major comes from the second notebook.

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Vivacious Vivaldi

Concerto for Strings in G minor is a spirited piece of music full of vigor. The subtle, delicate sound of the violins adds the perfect touch to this masterpiece by the ‘red- haired priest’ Vivaldi. Giovanni Antonini and his ensemble, Il Giardino Armonico, perform this piece with beauty and a spirit seldom matched.