While looking for some more challenging pieces to add to my repertoire, I came across Bach’s French Suites, written for harpsichord or clavichord. He wrote six between the years 1722 and 1725. They were inaccurately named by popular biographer Johann Nikolaus who in 1802 wrote “One usually calls them French Suites because they are written in the French manner.” In actuality, they largely follow Italian convention, and Bach employed dance movements foreign to the French manner.
Of the six suites, I am most fond of French Suite No. 5 in G major. I considered learning the entire suite before recording it, but a couple of the movements are quite challenging. It will take some time to learn all seven movements well enough to play in one sitting. So this week I present the first movement of French Suite No. 5 in G major – I. Allemande.
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