Bach: The French Suites

The rhythms of the dance have always provided composers with a vital source of inspiration. Bach was no exception, and a very high percentage of his music is related to the dance. Perhaps this is largely what gives it that marvellous vitality and spirit, and why it is so immediately appealing. The six French Suites contain some of Bach’s most attractive keyboard writing. The eight Little Preludes are among the most valuable pieces ever written for beginners, giving a wonderful introduction to voice imitation, pedal points, cadenza-like passages, and basic ornamentation. They cover many different moods and recall fond childhood memories. The remaining pieces on this recording are of a completely different nature. Both the Sonata in D minor, BWV964, and the Prelude and Fugue in A minor, BWV894, are virtuoso pieces, intended to show off the ability of the performer. Canadian pianist Angela Hewitt is the acknowledged master of Bach on the piano.

CDA67121/2  149 minutes 24 seconds (2 discs)
GRAMOPHONE EDITOR'S CHOICE
‘Hewitt's playing makes Bach's music live, for me, in a way that even the greatest harpsichordists do not’ (The Sunday Times)