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Hyperion Records

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Track(s) taken from CDH55269
Recording details: June 1987
St Paul's Church, New Southgate, London, United Kingdom
Produced by Mark Brown
Engineered by Antony Howell
Release date: April 1988
Total duration: 20 minutes 9 seconds

Oboe Concerto in F major
composer
reconstructed from BWV1053, BWV169 and BWV49

[Allegro]  [8'11]
Siciliano  [5'55]
Allegro  [6'03]

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
For the reconstruction of the F major oboe concerto we have to turn to two cantatas and a harpsichord concerto. The harpsichord concerto in E major (BWV1053) is generally regarded to be a reworking of an earlier oboe or violin concerto, and thought to have been recomposed between 1735 and 1740. But between the original concerto and its later harpsichord version Bach also used the first two movements (but in D major) of the original concerto for the cantata Gott soll allein (BWV169), and the last movement in the cantata Ich geh’ und suche mit Verlangen (BWV49), this time in E major. Both these cantatas probably date from 1726. Armed therefore with two separate sources for each movement (and no definitive key) it is possible to attempt a reconstruction of the original concerto.

For the first movement the opening Sinfonia to Cantata 169 appears to be the purest source, since the right hand of the solo organ part can be transcribed for the new solo instrument whereas the later harpsichord concerto is full of additional keyboard figurations. In the second movement, a Siciliano eminently suited to the oboe, Bach shortens the harpsichord version by eight bars, missing out a ritornello (and introducing a sudden harmonic shift), though he had included this section in the cantata, where the singer might well have needed to take a breath. The version recorded here grants the soloist that respite too. For the last movement the Cantata 49 version is used as the principal reference, though the harpsichord version is turned to at two points, substituting an unidiomatic repeated note with the harpsichord’s trill, and filling in the oboe’s line at two sparsely scored bars with the harpsichord’s added concerto part.

from notes by Robert King © 1988

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