Orchestral Suite No.2 - 2. Rondeau

By: Johann S. Bach
For: String quartet
page one of Orchestral Suite No.2 - 2. Rondeau

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Composer
Johann S. Bach
Year of composition
1738
Arranger
Difficulty
Moderate (Grades 4-6)
Duration
2 minutes
Genre
Classical music
License details
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.

It is unknown when exactly Johann Sebastian Bach wrote his Suite for Orchestra No. 2 in B minor, BWV 1067. It is a vibrant and fast-paced work, leaning towards the entertainment side of pure music. This suite is one of four such works that the composer wrote in his lifetime. Much of his works disappeared after his death in 1750, or it was dispersed among inheritors and friends, as well as discontinued editions of music and private collectors of ancient scores. In the middle of the nineteenth century, a revival of his music took place. People began collecting whatever scores and information they could about the man, and this was the first time such a revival happened. Scholars and musicians had never approached the work of a composer in this manner before; this was the birth of musicology. Bach's work was still a subject of investigation at the end of the twentieth century, and though an enormous amount of information had been collected at this point, a great deal of information about the music can still only be conjectured. One of the few things that one can say about Bach is that for a composer of his time, having written only four orchestral suites (also called overtures) says something about what kind of composer he was. Bach was not even slightly opposed to writing music for more money or power, but was less forthcoming with light music; he did not like it much. All of the lighter music he wrote was never published, including these overtures. Telemann, the most famous composer working in Germany at the time, wrote over 130 surviving suites for orchestra, and probably wrote over 1000 in his lifetime. These works were good for business, but Bach was more comfortable writing church music or works featuring striking fugal challenges. This piece gave him a chance to write for transverse flute, which had just begun to be in fashion. On the whole, he seemed to love good counterpoint more than anything else.

Nonetheless, these four works appeared, and they are fine examples of the lighter style, and display some of the interesting ways that the composer would approach the festive side of music making. These suites are a form derived from a collection of French ballets and operas. They usually begin with an overture in the French manner, regal and poised, followed by a collection of dances. French music and culture was the rage for much of Germany and other European countries. People emulated France as much as possible, but Bach's ear seems to have been more easily fixed on Italy. The music of Vivaldi and the Scarlattis (father and son) are constantly asserting themselves in Bach's music. He seems to have been attracted to the Italian brilliance of harmony, and the way they could make speedy ostinatos inject more excitement into an already lively beat. It was simply the most visceral music in Europe at the time, and when Bach added it to anything, sparks flew. In his Suite for Orchestra No.2 one can hear Vivaldi's concerto style in the Sarabande and the Minuet. Nothing is turgid about this piece. It was probably written around 1720, certainly before 1723, when he began work at Leipzig. He was usually too busy to write much secular music, unless it was of very high quality. Listeners should not shy away from these orchestral suites because they are not aching with the profundity of Art of Fugue. They are simply charming, summery pieces.

This arrangement comes with an optional bass part for use with string orchestra.

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Holberg Suite - 2. Sarabande, Holberg Suite - 4. Air, The Manhattan Beach March, I Got The Blues, In The Bleak Mid-Winter, It Came Upon The Midnight Clear, Jerusalem (And Did Those Feet In Ancient Time), Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring, Jingle Bells, Joy To The World, Key-Stone Rag, King Cotton, L'Autunno ("Autumn") - 1. Allegro, Slavonic Dance, Op.72 No.2, Symphonie Fantastique - 2. Un Bal, Orchestral Suite No.2 - 7. Badinerie, L'Autunno ("Autumn") - 3. Allegro, The Stars And Stripes Forever, L'Estate ("Summer") - 1. Allegro non molto, Symphony No.25 - 4. Allegro, The Barber of Seville - Overture, L'Estate ("Summer") - 2. Adagio, Presto, L'Estate ("Summer") - 3. Presto, La Marseillaise, La Damnation de Faust - Rakoczy March, Trio No.1, Of The Father's Love Begotten, Swan Lake - Dance of the Cygnets, Largo al factotum, from "The Barber of Seville", Little Jesus, Sweetly Sleep, Morning Has Broken, Lohengrin - The Bridal Chorus, Lullaby, Lullay My Liking, Maple Leaf Rag, Trio No.3, Minute Waltz, Op.64 No.1, Mon coeur s'ouvre a ta voix, from "Samson et Dalila", Orchestral Suite No.2 - 4. Bourree I and II, Symphony No.29 - 4. Allegro con spirito, Habanera from "Carmen", O Little Town Of Bethlehem (2), O soave fanciulla, from "La boheme", Birthday Minuet, Ode To Joy, Once in Royal David's City, Kinderszenen, Op.15 No.11 Furchtenmachen (Frightening), Pavane, Op.50, Gradual, Trumpet Tune, Piano Sonata No.14 "Moonlight" - 2. Allegretto, Un bel di vedremo, from "Madama Butterfly", Kinderszenen, Op.15 No.7 Traumerei (Dreaming), Children's Corner, No.6 The Golliwog's Cake-Walk, The Nutcracker - Overture, Preludes, Book 1 No.8 - The Girl With The Flaxen Hair, Radetzky March, Op.228, Unto Us A Child Is Born, Roses From The South, A Midsummer Night's Dream Op.61 "The Wedding March", Semper Fidelis, We Wish You A Merry Christmas, Vissa d'arte, from "Tosca", Serenade No.10 "Gran Partita" - 3. Adagio, Sextet: Chi mi frena, from "Lucia di Lammermoor", Si. Mi chiamano Mimi, from "La boheme", Siegfried Idyll, Silent Night, Sleepy Sidney, Sonata "Pathetique" Op.13 - 1. Grave - Allegro, Sonata "Pathetique" Op.13 - 2. Adagio cantabile, Serenade No.10 "Gran Partita" - 6. Theme and variations, Sonata in A, KV 331 - 1. Andante grazioso (Theme and variations), Water Music Suite No.1 in F, Sonata in A, KV 331 - 2. Menuetto and Trio, Song to the Moon, from "Rusalka", Orchestral Suite No.3 - 4. Bourree, Song Without Words No.30 - Spring Song Op.62 No.6, A Midsummer Night's Dream Op.61 "The Wedding March", Song Without Words No.45 - Scherzo Op.102 No.3, St. Paul's Suite - 4. Finale (The Dargason), String Serenade - 2. Waltz, Symphony No.25 - 2. Andante, The Amazon Rag, Orchestral Suite No.2 - 3. Sarabande, The Blue Danube Waltzes, Brandenburg Concerto No.5 - 2. Affettuoso, The Cannon Ball Rag, The First Noel, The Gladiator March, The High School Cadets, While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks, Who Let The Cows Out?, Symphony No.29 - 3. Menuetto, In Dulci Jubilo, Who Let The Cows Out? - For Sax Quartet (AATB), Wine, Women and Song, Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, Good King Wenceslas, God Save The Queen, El Capitan, Duet: Sous le dome epais, from "Lakme", Concerto in D minor for 2 Violins - 3. Allegro, Concerto for Two Violins "L'estro armonico" Op.3 No.8 - Movement 3, Concerto for Two Violins "L'estro armonico" Op.3 No.8 - Movement 1, Christians, Awake!, Chanson Triste, Op.40 No.2, Chanson de Matin, Canon in D, Brook Green Suite - 3. Dance, Brandenburg Concerto No.6 - 3. Allegro, Brandenburg Concerto No.6 - 1. Allegro, Brandenburg Concerto No.2 - 3. Allegro assai, Brandenburg Concerto No.2 - 2. Andante, Bethena - A Concert Waltz, Babes in Toyland - March of the Toys, Ave Maria, Op.52 No.6, Au fond du temple saint, from "The Pearl Fishers", Anvil Chorus, from "Il Trovatore", Anvil Chorus, from "Il Trovatore", Angels From The Realms of Glory, A Thousand And One Nights, A Midsummer Night's Dream Op.61 - Scherzo, A Cyclone in Darktown, Serenade No.10 "Gran Partita" - 2. Menuetto; Trio 1; Trio 2, William Tell - Overture, Symphony No.40 - 1. Allegro molto, Slavonic Dance, Op.46 No.7, Orchestral Suite No.2 - 5. Polonaise and Double, Solomon - Act III, Sinfonia "Arrival of the Queen of Sheba", Symphony No.40 - 2. Andante, Carmen - Act 1: Prelude, Symphony No.40 - 3. Menuetto, Slavonic Dance, Op.46 No.8 and 1812 Overture

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