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Brandenburg Concertos


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Bach's 6 ‘Concerti Grossi’ for various combinations. Dedicated to Christian Ludwig, Margrave of Brandenburg (1721) but it appears they were never played for him. They are as follows: (1) F Major. 2 hn., 3 ob., and bn., str. (incl. Violino Piccolo, i.e. small vn.), hpd.(2) †F Major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—(a) Concertino: tpt., fl., ob., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.(3) G Major. 3 groups of str. (each vn., va., vc.), db., and hpd.(4) †G Major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—(a) Concertino: vn. and 2 fl.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.(5) †D major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—(a) Concertino: hpd., fl., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str. (no 2nd vns.); (c) hpd. for the continuo.(6) B♭ Major. (No vns.) 2 va., 2 viole da gamba, vc., hpd. It will be seen that the 3 marked † are true Concerti Grossi in the traditional style of contrasting groups. No.3 has only 2 movements and there is considerable scholastic speculation on the ‘missing’ middle movement. Presumably the works were comp. for Cöthen court orch. Bach's title for them was Concerts avec plusieurs instruments.

(1) F Major. 2 hn., 3 ob., and bn., str. (incl. Violino Piccolo, i.e. small vn.), hpd.

(2) †F Major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—(a) Concertino: tpt., fl., ob., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.

(a) Concertino: tpt., fl., ob., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.

(3) G Major. 3 groups of str. (each vn., va., vc.), db., and hpd.

(4) †G Major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—

(a) Concertino: vn. and 2 fl.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.

(a) Concertino: vn. and 2 fl.; (b) Ripieno: str.; (c) hpd.

(5) †D major. In 2 groups, plus Continuo—

(a) Concertino: hpd., fl., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str. (no 2nd vns.); (c) hpd. for the continuo.

(a) Concertino: hpd., fl., vn.; (b) Ripieno: str. (no 2nd vns.); (c) hpd. for the continuo.

(6) B♭ Major. (No vns.) 2 va., 2 viole da gamba, vc., hpd.

Subjects: Music.


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