Brandenburg Concerto No. 5 BWV 1050

Johann Sebastian Bach
Composed 1720-1721

December 5-7, 2013
Julia Bogorad-Kogan, flute
Kyu-Young Kim, violin
Ilya Poletaev, harpsichord
1 0:21:29 Add to Playlist Play Now  
  Entire Recording 0:21:29 Add to Playlist Play Now  
November 26-28, 2010
Laurence Cummings, conductor
Laurence Cummings, harpsichord
Julia Bogorad-Kogan, flute
Ruggero Allifranchini, violin
1 Allegro 0:09:34 Add to Playlist Play Now  
2 Affettuoso 0:05:24 Add to Playlist Play Now  
3 Allegro 0:05:26 Add to Playlist Play Now  
  Entire Recording 0:20:24 Add to Playlist Play Now  
December 11-13, 2009
Elsa Nilsson, violin
Alicia McQuerrey, flute
Steven Copes, violin
Maiya Papach, viola
Susan Babini, cello
Fred Bretschger, double bass
Layton James, harpsichord
1 Allegro 0:09:35 Add to Playlist Play Now  
2 Affettuoso 0:05:15 Add to Playlist Play Now  
3 Allegro 0:05:37 Add to Playlist Play Now  
  Entire Recording 0:20:27 Add to Playlist Play Now  
Hear it Live
Don't miss your chance to hear this music performed live on December 10-12, 2015.
Johann Sebastian Bach
Library of Congress

The Fifth Brandenburg Concerto features flute, violin and harsichord as soloists. Such a trio was a common chamber music ensemble at the time, playing works for two melody lines and basso continuo known as trio sonatas. What is remarkable about this concerto is that the harpsichord functions as more than a supporting accompanist; it contributes whirlwind solo passages, and it issues a monster of a cadenza at the end of the first movement. This use of the harpsichord as a solo instrument foreshadows the seminal keyboard concertos Bach later assembled in Leipzig.

The middle movement, labeled “Affettuoso” (“with feeling”), presents the soloists without the accompanying strings. Unlike a trio sonata, in which the harpsichord would typically have just a bass line with the right-hand harmonies filled in ad libitum, the harpsichordist’s right hand has its own melodic line that intermingles with the flute and violin. In the finale, a fugal structure reinforces the equal footing of the voices. The violin and flute take the first two entrances, and the harpsichord jumps in with the third and fourth voices of the fugue.

Aaron Grad ©2014

Comments