1738: Bach: Oboe Concerto

WEDNESDAY, March 17, 2021 – 8:46 AM

Bach: Oboe Concerto, age 53

This is Emma Black and the Netherlands Bach Society. I ran across this last night entirely by accident. YouTube did one of its “if you like that, my might like this” recommendations, and it just started playing. I knew it was Bach, but then I look at the video, saw the group, and I was immediately interested.

It is apparently a reconstruction of an oboe concerto, based on the keyboard concerto in E major, BWV 1053. No solo concertos for oboe have survived. There are indications that Bach did indeed compose oboe concertos, whose manuscripts and parts have been lost over the years. For a complete oboe concerto, however, we have to rely on reconstructions, such as this Oboe Concerto in F major BWV 1053r.

What this seems to mean is that Bach did not necessarily compose with the idea that his music was limited to just one instrument or group of instruments. The structure of his compositions are so pure and universal that any number of instrumental constructions work, so just which group we prefer today mostly is a matter of our modern taste.


3 thoughts on “1738: Bach: Oboe Concerto

  1. I always adore Bach’s oboe concertos, but perhaps I’m just a sucker for oboe. I found it quite interesting that the oboist was using a baroque style of the instrument.

  2. This group is great. They never disappoint.

    Although I saw the title, Oboe Concerto, I thought the instrument being played looked more like a recorder. After some investigation I learned that it is a Baroque Oboe.

  3. His concertos are sometimes (most times?) interchangeable: His A Major Keyboard is really his D Major violin. So much like this. I think you’re right, he pretty much was a universal writer, that is, whatever he writes plays on anything. His lute stuff is brilliant on guitar, and he also did it on keyboards. He took vocal works and made them into chorale preludes. I know his stuff is obnoxiously hard sometimes, but… it’s so worth it. I find so, anyway.

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