Hyperion Records

Fugue or Voluntary No 3 in B flat major, HWV607
composer
1716/7; published 1735

Recordings
'Handel: Harpsichord Suites' (CDD22045)
Handel: Harpsichord Suites
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Details
Track 18 on CDD22045 CD2 [2'37] 2CDs Dyad (2 for the price of 1)

Fugue or Voluntary No 3 in B flat major, HWV607
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Fugue No 3 in B flat major accords with the ‘pastoral’ associations of its key. (Interestingly, Lully had sometimes used B flat major to represent anti-masque demons and hobgoblins, possibly because two flats – the flattest transposition permitted in sixteenth-century modality – were problematical in French tuning and so acquired a taint of the lower regions.) Handel’s B flat fugue is pastorally sunny, with an ‘open’ theme on a falling third and rising fourth, a motif innocently pentatonic. Rhythmic regularity is again unsullied, though stretti enhance the momentum. The modulations are conventional, except for a touch of D minor – the upper mediant, or dominant of the relative minor.

from notes by Wilfrid Mellers © 1995

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