Hyperion Records

Partita No 6 in E minor, BWV830
composer
1731

Recordings
'Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach' (CDS44421/35)
Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach
MP3 £45.00FLAC £45.00ALAC £45.00Buy by post £50.00 CDS44421/35  15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  
'Bach: The Six Partitas' (CDA67191/2)
Bach: The Six Partitas
Details
Movement 1: Toccata – [Fugue]
Track 15 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [7'11] 2CDs
Track 15 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [7'11] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 2: Allemande
Track 16 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [3'27] 2CDs
Track 16 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [3'27] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 3: Corrente
Track 17 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [4'48] 2CDs
Track 17 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [4'48] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 4: Air
Track 18 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [1'34] 2CDs
Track 18 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [1'34] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 5: Sarabande
Track 19 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [7'24] 2CDs
Track 19 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [7'24] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 6: Tempo di Gavotta
Track 20 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [2'03] 2CDs
Track 20 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [2'03] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 7: Gigue
Track 21 on CDA67191/2 CD2 [6'04] 2CDs
Track 21 on CDS44421/35 CD7 [6'04] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

Partita No 6 in E minor, BWV830
EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
With the Partita No 6 in E minor Bach gives us one of his greatest masterpieces. It is a stupendous work on the grandest scale – one in which we feel his incredible strength of character, security, warmth of heart and deep faith. Here he is no longer writing for popular appeal but on the highest intellectual and emotional plane. The work opens with a Toccata where similar outer sections frame an extended fugue. Both the opening measure and the subject of the fugue make use of the ‘sigh’ motif (a descending appoggiatura) to add extra expressivity. By keeping the same basic tempo throughout the Toccata, unity is achieved (this seems to be called for by Bach as material from the first page later appears in the last episode of the fugue). The Allemande, with its poignant chromaticisms, is followed by a remarkable Corrente. One’s fingers can take an almost physical pleasure in executing its mischievous syncopations with delicacy, rapidity and brilliance. A brief Air, with a surprising second ending, precedes the Sarabande – surely one of Bach’s greatest creations. At first sight (or upon first hearing) this movement can seem baffling. It takes time to discover the framework beneath the profusion of notes, and to realize its emotional power. For me Bach is alone in this Sarabande – alone in communion with his maker in a dialogue that is at once sorrowful, hopeful, passionate, and at times exalted (the marvellous, brief modulations into major keys in bars 7, 8 and 30 interrupt the darkness with flashes of light). To go from deep inside Bach’s inner world (and therefore our own) straight into the Tempo di Gavotta can come as a bit of a shock, but we can only marvel at how Bach immediately begins to dance – even in a minor key. This is not a true gavotte – it is much more like an Italian Giga in 12/8 time. In this, and in the concluding Gigue, the interpreter faces the problem of possible alteration of note values. Playing the semiquavers to coincide with the triplets gives the Tempo di Gavotta more bounce (as does the shortening of the first two notes in the right hand). There are two very different ways of playing the Gigue fugue. One is to play a version in triple metre, bringing it somewhat closer to a traditional jig; the other is to play it exactly as written, emphasizing its angularity. I opt for the latter both because I feel the fugue subject loses force if altered and also to provide greater contrast with the preceding gavotte. Bach really outdoes himself in this final Gigue, demanding the utmost in mental virtuosity from the player. At a lively tempo the severe counterpoint can still be made to dance. Even if, in the six Partitas, my greatest affection lies with the D major Allemande, for this final Partita I say to Bach, ‘Hats off!’

from notes by Angela Hewitt © 1997

Track-specific metadata
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Details for CDA67191/2 disc 2 track 21
Gigue
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-97-12221
Duration
6'04
Recording date
8 January 1997
Recording venue
Beethovensaal, Hannover, Germany
Recording producer
Ludger Böckenhoff
Recording engineer
Ludger Böckenhoff
Hyperion usage
  1. Bach: The Six Partitas (CDA67191/2)
    Disc 2 Track 21
    Release date: April 1997
    2CDs
  2. Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach (CDS44421/35)
    Disc 7 Track 21
    Release date: September 2010
    15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
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