Movement 1: Präludium: Largo
Movement 2: Gavotte: Allegretto
Movement 3: Largo
Movement 4: Gigue: Vivace
The Largo third movement is a deeply expressive and rather melancholic soliloquy in B flat major, its chaste single line progressively reinforced by plangent double-stopping and more rapid scalic passages. Beginning fairly high in the instrument’s register, it falls into a brown study in the lowest part of its compass in the middle of the movement, and it is in those regions, after a return to the opening theme, that it dies away. Like Bach’s cello suites this one ends with a Gigue, a robust and bracing movement full of strong rhythm and yet imbued with the melancholy qualities of the D minor tonality that were more thoroughly explored in the Präludium. This does not sound like a communal dance, but like one danced alone, with no one to share the pleasure, to keep one’s spirits up.
from notes by Calum MacDonald © 2008