Suite No 5 in C minor, BWV 1011

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach (b. 1685 - d. 1750)
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Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach (b. 1685 - d. 1750)

Performance date: 02/07/2017

Venue: St. Brendan’s Church

Composition Year: 1720

Duration: 00:22:10

Recording Engineer: Richard McCullough, RTÉ lyric fm

Instrumentation: vc

Instrumentation Category:Solo

Artists: Pieter Wiespelwey - [cello]

Suite is unique in that Bach uses
the only time in his entire oeuvre, the highest string being tuned
down from A to G.
is also worth noting the unique position the Suite holds in that it
was also transcribed by the composer for Lute.
use of scordatura was not unusual at the time, and was most likely
used here to facilitate the playing of certain chords.

prelude of the Fifth Cello Suite is in C minor, a key normally
associated with seriousness in works such as St. Matthews’ Passion
and Beethoven’s
It is written in the form of Prelude and Fugue with no break between
the sections. The Fifth Suite Allemande is more serious in character
and its powerful dotted rhythms can be played in the French Baroque
Style with double-dotted notes further emphasising the resolute and
vigorous character. The Fifth Suite Courante is especially important
in the Cello Suites as it is the only representative of the elegant
and complex French-style courante, more stately than its Italian
version. Furthermore, it is not only the only representative of this
style in the Cello Suites, but also in the Sonatas and Partitas for
Solo Violin. The Fifth Sarabande is an enigma in many ways and also
one of Bach’s most beautiful sarabandes. A short movement, consisting
of only 108 notes from beginning to end the movement presents an
other-worldly picture beyond the depths of despair which is in huge
contrast to the following Gavottes. Of all the dances that have their
origins in country dances, the gavotte, with its moderately fast
tempo and duple meter, is one that has most maintained its original
characteristics. The Fifth Suite Gigue, like the courante, is a
fairly clear example of the French style of Gigue. It is filled with
subtle rhythmic nuances that never seem to settle into regularity,
therefore keeping performers and listeners continuously on the edge
of their seat.