155 Days With Bach and Me

All Bach, All the Time…Everything Johann Composed

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Day Thirty Five: English Suites, Part One (CD 2-12)

August 31st, 2011 · 3 Comments · 1725, Bach at 40, Bob Van Asperen, BWV 806, BWV 807, BWV 808, CD 2-12, English Suites, Harpsichord

Bach Edition 35English Suites, eh? What’s an English Suite?

As usual, Wikipedia to the rescue. Here’s the entry for English Suites:

The English Suites, BWV 806–811, are a set of six suites written by the German composer Johann Sebastian Bach for harpsichord and generally thought to be the earliest of Bach’s 19 suites for keyboard, the others being the 6 French Suites, BWV 812-817, the 6 Partitas, BWV 825-830 and the Overture in the French style, BWV 831…

Although today’s compositions are once again played on the harpsichord, they’re performed by a different musician: Bob Van Asperen, a Dutch multi-instrumentalist known primarily for his prowess on the harpsichord. Makes sense.

These are terrific, full of variation and depth, speed and restraint. I could listen to this again, which is admitting a lot since it is music performed on the dreaded h-word instrument.

The compositions on today’s CD are:
BWV 806
BWV 807
BWV 808
All of the above were composed around 1725. Bach was 40.


3 Comments so far ↓

  • Mark Trigsted

    HaHa Now its the dreaded H-Word!!! Just finished 806… Loved it…

  • Mark Trigsted


    One more thought on the “H” – Not only melody, but it seems to me that the performer makes a big difference. Again far from an expert – but Van Asperen here and Christiane Wuyts on 2: 7-9 are easier for me to listen to than Belder. Is there such a thing as softness on the H??? Just my observations.


    PS Really Looking forward to my daily CD while working….

  • Mark Trigsted


    Thanks for the scanned CD covers… I have added them to my iTunes library for each CD.

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