The Palace on the Isle in the Royal Łazienki Museum in Warsaw
In some regions of 18th-century Germany, the last name Bach was not only unequivocally associated with the musical profession, but was even used as a synonym for the word musician. Among the talented representatives of the dynasty enumerated by the famous Johann Sebastian in the family genealogy, Johann Bernhard Bach (1676-1749) found his place at number 18. A distant relative of the Leipzig cantor, he took up the position of organist in Erfurt in 1695, then moved to Magdeburg in 1699, before settling permanently in Eisenach in 1703. There, he continued his work as an organist and also gained recognition as the court harpsichordist, and, from 1712, as the kapellmeister of the ensemble taken over from Telemann.
The experience gained while working with the orchestra and the repertoire performed certainly influenced his compositional style. Although only about a dozen pieces have survived to this day, Johann Berhard’s original compositional language can already be recognized based on this small sample. What stands out in particular are the orchestral suites – written in the German tradition (derived, in this case, from French music) – called overtures. In a quite freely arranged series of short movements, most of the fragments are dance forms (e.g. Gavotte, Sarabande, Minuet, Bourrée) or depict strong emotions (e.g. La Joye – joy, Les Plaisirs – pleasures). The fact that the overtures quickly reached Leipzig and were included by Johann Sebastian in the repertoire of the local Collegium Musicum attests to the greatness of these compositions.
Johann Bernhard Bach (1676-1749)
1. Ouverture-Suite in G minor
Ouverture– Air – Rondeau – Loure – Fantaisie – Passepied
2. Ouverture-Suite in G major
Ouverture – Gavotte en Rondeau – Sarabande – Bourrée – Air – Menuet – Gigue
3. Ouverture-Suite in E minor
Ouverture – Air – Les Plaisirs – Menuet I/II – Air – Rigaudon – Corante – Gavotte en Rondeau
4. Ouverture-Suite in D major
Ouverture – Caprice – Passepied I/II – Caprice – Air – La Joye – Caprice
KRZYSZTOF GARSTKA HARPSICHORD, CONDUCTOR
Duration: approx. 1 h 30 min
The seats in the auditorium are not numbered.