Terence Charlston is a leading specialist performer of early keyboard music. He is professor of harpsichord and basso continuo at the Royal Academy of Music, London and an international authority on historical performance practice. His mastery of historical performance practice and virtuoso technique marry to produce this truely outstanding CD of sparkling harpsichord repertoire.
Including the Chomatic Fantasia and Fugue (BWV 903) and also the well known Italian Concerto (BWV 971), this disc contains some of Bach’s key compositions for keyboard. Coupled with these, within an Italian theme, are some of his charming smaller-scale works such as his Aria variata (BWV 989) and the exquisite Aria from the Klavierbüchlein for Anna Magdalena Bach (BWV 988).
Given the stature of Italian music in the Baroque era, it is not surprising to find a vein of Italian musical style running through the keyboard works of Johann Sebastian Bach. The young Bach took the latest styles and clichés from Vivaldi and Albinoni and studied the music of Frescobaldi and Corelli for counterpoint and structure. Many of the forms in which he worked – including the fantasia, aria, toccata and fugue – were transplanted from Italy during the seventeenth century to find new roots north of the Alps. The pieces recorded here span Bach’s entire working life and show how these stock ideas profoundly influenced all the genres in which he worked.
1. Toccata in D major BWV 912
2-3. Chromatic Fantasia and Fugue in D minor BWV 903
4-14. Aria variata in the Italian manner BWV 989
15-17. Italian Concerto in F major BWV 971
18. Aria from the Clavierbüchlein for Anna Magdalena Bach BWV 988
19. Prelude in C minor BWV 999
20-21. Prelude and Fughetta in G major BWV 902
22. Fantasia in C minor BWV 906