Home » Projects » Bach: Sonatas et Partitas for solo violin » Album

Track Listing:

1
Bach: Sonata No. 1 in G minor - Adagio
 
2
Bach: Sonata No. 1 in G minor - Fuga: Allegro
 
3
Bach: Sonata No. 1 in G minor - Siciliana
 
4
Bach: Sonata No. 1 in G minor - Presto
 
5
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - Allemanda
 
6
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - II. Double
 
7
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - Corrente
 
8
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - Double: Presto
 
9
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - Sarabande
 
10
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - VI. Double
 
11
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - Tempo di Borea
 
12
Bach: Partita No. 1 in B minor - VIII. Double
 
13
Bach: Sonata No. 2 in A minor - Grave
 
14
Bach: Sonata No. 2 in A minor - Fuga
 
15
Bach: Sonata No. 2 in A minor - Andante
 
16
Bach: Sonata No. 2 in A minor - Allegro
 
17
Bach: Partita No. 2 in D minor - Allemanda
 
18
Bach: Partita No. 2 in D minor - Corrente
 
19
Bach: Partita No. 2 in D minor - Sarabanda
 
20
Bach: Partita No. 2 in D minor - Giga
 
21
Bach: Partita No. 2 in D minor - Ciaccona
 
22
Bach: Sonata No. 3 in C major - Adagio
 
23
Bach: Sonata No. 3 in C major - Fuga
 
24
Bach: Sonata No. 3 in C major - Largo
 
25
Bach: Sonata No. 3 in C major - Allegro assai
 
26
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Preludio
 
27
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Loure
 
28
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Gavotte en Rondeau
 
29
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Menuet I
 
30
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Menuet II
 
31
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Bouree
 
32
Bach: Partita No. 3 in E major - Jig
 

James Ehnes :

Bach: Sonatas et Partitas for solo violin


A WORD FROM JAMES EHNES - The works of Bach solo violin are very dear to me and hold a place in my concert repertoire. The registration of these monumental works early career was a rare privilege. I will always be grateful to Analekta for giving me this amazing opportunity. Although my interpretations have evolved over time and continue to change throughout my life, it is a great pleasure to listen to these pieces and remember, with pride, the incredible experience when recording these masterpieces. -James Ehnes Certainly the pantheon of works for violin, twin sisters Six suites for Unaccompanied cello written at the same time, the Sonatas and Partitas for solo violin by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) if they are a top, do not make them Himalayas.

Bach, in excellent teacher, has always understood and desired as well: writing music is to be played in addition to being contemplated. His son, and generations of aspiring musicians since have learned to their cost and ultimately to their delight. Of Orgelbüchlein, Clavierbüchlein and Well-Tempered Clavier, until these two collections for only melodic instrument, it all rubbed and all came out grandis. It was sometimes considered these sonatas, partitas and suites as to have been unplayable at the time of their composition. After the death of JS Bach, however, works for solo violin attracted the attention of many of the best violinists of the time, who saw these pieces of an outdated style a way to improve their technique. Forkel, Bach's first biographer, wrote in 1802: "These items were considered very long by violinists as a way to own violin technique and thereby to teach." Yet they do not present themselves as a priori didactic pieces; we should rather look at them as a continuation and culmination of the German tradition of works for unaccompanied violin, like those of Biber, Westhoff and Pisendel (Bach had also met the latter two). They are in fact the first examples of works for solo violin that are truly transcendent, in every sense of the word. One might ask why Bach would have made these bets, these demanding and brilliant works? And in what circumstances? Frankly, we do not know much about it, except that he imagined them in the years when he was in the service of Prince Leopold of Anhalt-Köthen, from December 1717 to April 1723. Unlike the Cello Suites, why there remains no autograph manuscript, one can add the date to 1720 Sei Solo a Violino senza Basso accompagnato, Bach having then written in his hand a clean copy of that name. This precious manuscript, written in the finest calligraphy of the composer, would have been saved from certain destruction when he was found in St. Petersburg in 1814 in a stack of papers for the creamery. Several non-autograph copies were in circulation in the second half of the 18th century (as confirmed above the words of Forkel) and Pisendel had even in his possession, but the first edition of one of those works had to wait until 1798, when published by Jean Baptiste Cartier its important didactic book, the Art of the violin . It contained the grand Fugue in C major drawn from the Third Sonata, reproduced, according to Cartier, according to a copy lent by the French violinist Gaviniès. The first complete edition of the Sonatas and partitas for solo violin has appeared that by 1802 Simrock of Bonn. No one knows, either, for whom these Sonatas and Partitas were written. Bach himself was a fairly competent violinist, but it is unlikely he could play the most difficult pages of such works. One would assume that they were intended for her colleague Pisendel Weimar, or the first violin of the orchestra of Cöthen Joseph Speiss. But why speculate like that? Let us rather bear with the music like no other in the virtual polyphony suggested with absolute control, and which can also take pleasure in imagining that needle us in the ways of the soul, feelings and sensations. Indeed, we have already suggested, these works should not be addressed simply as a parade of dexterity - these are brilliant works, certainly, but not virtuosos from a purely "mechanical" the word. Many of the parts are probably very difficult to play, but who would hear them play as if they were? The interpreter must rather transcend barriers afi n to make clear at the hearing internal complexities and overall structure of each piece as well as the whole set. To this end, the bow of an eloquent violinist for the job infinitely better than the pen of some modest hack whatsoever. The commentator can explain each piece, each section or each measurement as needed, but that the really listen? He can tell where, when and by whom the work was composed (this, it has already done); it can be said that the Sonata here follows the form of four movements of the Sonata da Chiesa (church sonata) and the Partita is a suite of dances in varying numbers, on the model of the Sonata da camera (chamber sonata) ; he can tell a prelude is a curtain raiser, a chaconne is a series of variations on a repeated harmonic pattern, a fugue is fugal and a dance is dancing. But, that being said, nothing, in fact, has been said. Words are insufficient to describe what only the heart and soul can conceive: the deep meaning of music and how it speaks to the senses, the intellect, God or all together. Bach never explained his music and he had no need. His music speaks for itself, sings itself. Hear then! Listen to the music! Marvel again and again before Bach. He has the gift to capture the soul as deep an adagio, a complex fugue, a harmonious chant, a chaconne noble and nimble a minuet or a jig. Listen to what Bach says ... © Jacques-André Houle.