Johann Sebastian Bach - Four Orchestral Suites (CD142)

  1. Overture
  2. Courante
  3. Gavotte I - Gavotte II
  4. Forlane
  5. Menuet I - Menuet II
  6. Bourreé I - Bourreé II
  7. Passepied I - Passepied II
  8. Overture
  9. Rondeau
  10. Sarabande
  11. Bourreé I - Bourreé II
  12. Polonaise - Double
  13. Menuet
  14. Badinerie
  15. Overture
  16. Air
  17. Gavotte I - Gavotte II
  18. Bourreé
  19. Gigue
  20. Overture
  21. Boureé I - Bourreé II
  22. Gavotte
  23. Menuet I - Menuet II
  24. Réjoussance

J.S. Bach wrote several Suites (also called Overtures) of which four have survived. In his unmeasurable genius, Bach produced pieces which required remarkable virtuosity from the musicians and at the same time were charming, but highly complex and well crafted, light spirited at times, but also full of emotion. Bach displays his mastery of the genre as well as he does in his entire oeuvre.

This recording is a sincere attempt to capture this music played by expert period instrumentalists in a space most like those typically used for such performances at the time. We brought our technology to the "Knight's Hall" at the majestic "Schloß Weinberg" castle in the Austrian countryside and took a sonic snapshot of a genuine baroque performance using strict minimal miking and Chesky's unique audio technology. The large and uneven hard stone room proved a true recording challenge which has been overcome by producing a recording showing the sonorities of the instruments, in that space, with all their characteristics. We feel this purist recording will transport you back in time to a most enjoyable listening experience.

With the composing genius of J.S. Bach as its model, Ars Antiqua Austria brings an historical perspective to its performance of works from the 17th and 18th Centuries. In this repertoire, the chamber music of Austrian Baroque composers H.I.F. Biber, J.J. Fux, G. Muffat, J.H. Schmelzer and R. Weichlein receives special attention.

This authentic-instrument ensemble often casts musicians from other parts of Europe who are experts in the Baroque period, creating a unique multicultural approach to music from this era.

The musicians bring together a variety of experiences performing with other leading ensembles including: Concentus Musicus Wein, Música Antiqua Koln and Hesperion XX, combined with a strong Austrian interpretive tradition.

Ars Antiqua Austria has an active concert schedule and has made several recordings. This project marks the ensemble's debut on Chesky Records.