Tablet - Portrait

Tablet - Landscape


Johann Sebastian Bach

Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) was presumed to have composed his Concerto in C major for two harpsichords, BWV 1061, circa 1730, making it one of his earliest concertos for the instrument. In the absence of an earlier model, the work was apparently originally conceived and executed as a harpsichord concerto and not as a transcription from another genre. The opening Allegro has the two soloists and the string ripieno working as a fully integrated unit from the brief ritornello that starts the work through the elaborate development sections straight through to the broad final cadence. The central Adagio with the ripieno tacit is a gentle and intimate Siciliano in the relative minor for the soloists alone. The closing Fugue starts with the first harpsichord alone for the first statement of the sunny main them. The second harpsichord joins the first for the second statement and a long development section before the violins of the ritornello join the soloists. Finally, nearly half way through the movement, the remainder of the strings join the texture. Although the ritornello is nearly silent for most of the concerto, the notion that the work could be played as a work for two harpsichords senza ritornello defies Bach's own intentions.