Sinfonia concertante, S. 98.6

P.D.Q. Bach

Edited by Prof. Peter Schickele
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

The Sinfonia Concertante, one of the most normal of P.D.Q. Bach?s works, is also a striking example of the Soused Period?s most characteristic characteristic: a sense of orchestration and tonal color so exotic that it borders on the irresponsible. It is hard to imagine, for instance, two instruments more unevenly matched than the lute and the bagpipes. The balalaika adds international flavor and very little else, which is more than can be said for the ocarina, or sweet potato, as it has euphemistically come to be called. The left-handed sewer flute and the double reed slide music stand were not uncommon in the eighteenth century ? both Bach and Handel were quite familiar with them, which is why the repertoire for these instruments does not include anything by Bach and Handel ? but P.D.Q. Bach was, as far as we know, the only composer with enough daring and ignorance to write for both simultaneously, using their incompatibility as a structural element in the composition.

The manuscript of the Sinfonia Concertante was discovered by the author at the bottom of a closet in the McEisenstadt castle in Scotland, where it had been apparently untouched since Morrie MacEisenstadt, an execrable early-nineteenth-century piper who had been forbidden, on pain of death, to play the great piobaireachd literature for that instrument, acquired it for his own personal use, presumably from ?Boozey? Hawkes in Liverpool.

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Additional Information

Duration 00:08:00
Editor Schickele, Prof. Peter
Orchestration Lute, Balalaika, Ocarina, Bagpipes, Left-Handed Sewer Flute, Double-Reed Slide Music Stand, Strings