J.S. Bach: Organ Trio Sonatas, BWV 525-530 arranged for multiple instruments / Florilegium

Ensemble

Notes & Reviews:

The wealth of secular and sacred music Bach produced in his lifetime stands in stark contrast to the dearth of existing (or surviving) music for chamber ensemble. This deficit has been addressed by the English early instrument ensemble Florilegium with this disc from Channel Classics featuring the group's charming and colorful arrangements of the master's six organ Trio Sonatas. Adapting these pieces for varying combinations of instruments fits comfortably within the canon when one considers Bach's own interest in transferring styles and idioms from other works to a solo or group of instruments, and vice versa, something which he explored particularly during his years of employment at the ducal court in Weimar.

The Sunday Times (UK)
It is a measure of Florilegium's success that anyone who does not know the organ originals would hardly guess that these trios were not conceived for flute, strings and lute or harpsichord continuo. Unreservedly recommended.

BBC Music Magazine, November 2012
If the spirit of the originals is hard to reproduce, the attempt yields a rich crop of repertoire-enhancing chamber music. The playing sparkles with an intoxicating freshness that continually invites the lively outer movements onto the dance floor.

ClassicsToday.com
The process is perfectly legitimate in giving us six more trio sonatas to add to Bach's scanty output for chamber forces, and it has been beautifully done here. The playing is consistently fine, especially by violinist Rodolfo Richter, and the harpsichord continuo is very sensitively managed.

Listeners will welcome the opportunity to hear some of Bach's best instrumental music in these new, impressively idiomatic arrangements.

Gramophone Magazine, November 2012
Especially imaginative scorings inform Florilegium's critiquing of the sonatas' contrapuntal clarity and spaciousness, ones which exploit the multi-genre references which so fascinated Bach...the main Florilegium protagonists offer some wonderfully responsive and vital Bach-playing, esepcially in the framing works.

The Observer, 29th July 2012
The trio sonatas that Bach wrote, probably for his son Wilhelm Friedemann to master his skills at the organ, are so perfect that you can understand why others have plundered them for different instruments...The most successful are BWV 525 and 526, nicely done with flute and violin duetting equally over continuo.



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