Bach: Transcriptions / Stefano Molardi
Transcription has always been a widespread musical practice, following the desire to arrange pieces originally written for an instrumental and/or vocal ensemble for an instrument like the organ or harpsichord or, later, the piano. The eighteenth century was a very fertile period for transcriptions, reaching its pinnacle among Johann Sebastian Bach’s circle. The transcriptions Bach (1685-1750) made during his time in Weimar both for organ (three concertos by Vivaldi and two by Johann Ernst of Saxe-Weimar) and an astonishing 14 for harpsichord (by various Italian composers) are of great artistic value. However, Bach also adapted his own works originally written for instruments or voices, ‘appropriating’ them for the keyboard. These included the first movement of his Trio Sonata No. 4, taken from the sinfonia from the cantata Die Himmel erzählen die Ehre Gottes BWV 76 (for oboe d’amore, viola da gamba and basso continuo) and the Schübler chorales, which started off life as arias in various cantatas.
The aim of this recording is to offer a series of transcriptions that were originally written for instruments other than the organ. The transcribers include Bach himself, contemporaries of him, two 19th century composers: Alexandre Guilmant and Robert Schaab, a pupil of Mendelssohn, ending with the present organist, Stefano Molardi himself.
Stefano Molardi is a “renaissance man”, organist, harpsichordist, scholar, historian and writer. He recorded extensively: the complete organ works by J.S. Bach, organ works by Bach family members, complete organ works by Kuhnau and other repertoire. His playing is clear, crisp, free and rhythmically vibrant. His recordings received 5 star reviews in the international classical magazines. Played on the Johann Nepomuk Holzhey (1797) organ at the Neresheim Abbey, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, the specifications of which are included in the booklet.
Release Date: July 22, 2022
Catalog Number: BRI96413
Label: Brilliant Classics
Number of Discs: 2
Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Stefano Molardi