Hyperion Records

Fantasia and Fugue in A minor, BWV904
composer

Recordings
'Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach' (CDS44421/35)
Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach
Buy by post £50.00 CDS44421/35  15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  
'Bach: Fantasia, Aria & other works' (CDA67499)
Bach: Fantasia, Aria & other works
Buy by post £13.99 (ARCHIVE SERVICE) CDA67499  Archive Service; also available on CDS44421/35  
Details
Movement 1: Fantasia
Track 1 on CDA67499 [3'37] Archive Service; also available on CDS44421/35
Track 1 on CDS44421/35 CD15 [3'37] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 2: Fugue
Track 2 on CDA67499 [4'22] Archive Service; also available on CDS44421/35
Track 2 on CDS44421/35 CD15 [4'22] 15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

Fantasia and Fugue in A minor, BWV904
EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
BWV904 does seem like an organ piece at times. It is not hard to imagine the descending bass at the opening of the fantasia doubled by the pedals, giving it even more gravity and weight than it already has. (Some pianists try to imitate this by adding the extra octave, but this is a case where that can only be done with the addition of a lot of sustaining pedal, thus blurring the wonderful counterpoint.) It is marked alla breve and resembles the stile antico style of writing (the Baroque adaptation of Renaissance polyphony). The opening ritornello appears four times with three interspersed episodes, all emphasizing the contrapuntal nature of the piece. The fugue has two subjects: the first boldly characterized by leaps and punctuated by rests; the second a slow, descending chromatic scale that makes a dramatic appearance halfway through. They could not be more different. But that is exactly what Bach wants, especially when he combines the two in the final section. That way there are easily distinguishable. Making that audible to the listener, however, is not easy as his counterpoint in this case is awkward and doesn’t lie well under the fingers. It is thought that Bach was not responsible for placing these two movements together; in fact they don’t appear that way until early in the nineteenth century – and then only by accident. However, I don’t think we would realize this if we didn’t already know, as they make such good companions.

from notes by Angela Hewitt © 2004

Track-specific metadata
Click track numbers opposite to select

Details for CDA67499 track 1
Fantasia
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-04-49901
Duration
3'37
Recording date
5 February 2004
Recording venue
Henry Wood Hall, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Ludger Böckenhoff
Recording engineer
Ludger Böckenhoff
Hyperion usage
  1. Bach: Fantasia, Aria & other works (CDA67499)
    Disc 1 Track 1
    Release date: July 2004
    Deletion date: January 2013
    Archive Service; also available on CDS44421/35
  2. Bach: Angela Hewitt plays Bach (CDS44421/35)
    Disc 15 Track 1
    Release date: September 2010
    15CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
  3. Bach: Fantasia, Aria & other works (SACDA67499)
    Disc 1 Track 1
    Release date: July 2004
    Deletion date: March 2009
    Super-Audio CD — Deleted
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