The Toccata in G minor, BWV915 has many distinctive features, including a cyclic feeling (the opening flourish returns at the end of the piece), and a concluding four-part fugue that obstinately remains in dotted rhythm throughout. In between we have a short adagio, and a cheerful allegro in B flat major which is in total contrast to the difficult, but very exciting fugue. Concerning the latter, only Bach could write so imaginatively on what seems at first like a very dull subject. With him, repetition of a motive only builds excitement and strength rather than causing us to lose attention. This is one fugue that is a perfect example of what the piano can bring to Bach. On the harpsichord it is relentless. On the piano one can lighten the second and fourth beats, giving the subject a welcome buoyancy which serves to enhance its power and character. The episodes can also be coloured differently, especially the one in E flat major which provides some welcome relief. The insistent character of the fugue is emphasized in a passage right before the end where part of the countersubject is presented in both hands simultaneously in parallel thirds.
from notes by Angela Hewitt © 2002