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Concerto for Oboe and Bassoon in C minor.

Digital Sheet Music

By George Frideric Handel

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Oboe, Bassoon, Violin, Viola, Cello, String Orchestra - Advanced Intermediate - Digital Download
Composed by George Frideric Handel (1685-1759). Baroque Period, Repertoire, European, Recital. Score, Set of Parts. 57 pages. Published by Arte Nova Music Lab (S0.700087).

Item Number: S0.700087

Around the year 1726, John Walsh, a London music publisher, created a wonderful forgery in order to run around the copyright laws of the day: he pretended to pirate an edition supposedly published by the House of Roger in Amsterdam. This forgery included 12 Sonatas for solo instrument and continuo which had been composed by one George Frideric Handel (1685-1759). Around 1793 the House of Arnold published the same set, omitting two of the original 12 and replacing them with two others by Handel. So at this point there were a total of 14 solo sonatas available to the public.

In the year 1879 Friedrich Chrysander issued these 14 works and several others in volume 27 of the German Handel Society’s Gesamtausgabe of Handel’s works. Since then they have been edited from this scholarly work many times, and afflicted by all sorts of permutations which reflect the various styles of performance in vogue over the years. One finds editions stripped of ornamentation but loaded with articulation and dynamic markings at one end of the spectrum, and editions with modest stenographic and florid ornamentation at the other.

The Sonata in C Minor (London: 1712) is a pure example of the middle phase of the solo sonata da chiesa [church sonata]. The first three movements are indicative of the style found in sonatas derived from the disruptive canzona of the early 17th century. An initial slow movement with walking bass is followed by an imitative movement (in this case, a fugue with a chromatic subject), which in turn leads to an Adagio. This latter movement in the relative major is a ricercare containing several imitative entrances. The finale is a spirited binary-form Bourrée angloise, an item taken over from the French ordre or dance suite. The extraordinarily short length of this movement seems to indicate that a trio is missing here; therefore, I have added the bourrée from the Royal Fireworks Music of 1749 to act as a trio, but players are certainly free to omit it. Adding a series of variations based on the chord changes of the Bourrée angloise would be an alternative way to lend weight to this final movement.

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