‘Musical offering’ reviewed in Early Music

Medium hpm011 cover

Daniel Bangert reviewed our CD ‘Musical offering’ for Early Music

‘Johann Sebastian Bach / Dieterich Buxtehude: Musical offering’ is a release from the Bach Players: Marion Moonen (flute), Nicolette Moonen (violin), Reiko Ichise (viola da gamba) and Silas Wollston (harpsichord). Bach’s Musical Offering is enigmatic in several respects, not least of all regarding the placement of the ten canons around the ricercars and sonata. Silas Wollston addresses this in an essay in the liner notes entitled ‘Bach the orator’ by discussing Ursula Kirkendale’s argument that the pieces of The Musical Offering represent successive sections of an oration. Wollston goes on to describe the sections in terms of musical oration, making reference to Quintilian. While he makes a convincing case, he acknowledges the contested status of Kirkendale’s theory and notes the countering views of Bach scholars such as Peter Williams and Christoph Wolff. Taking this rhetorical approach, the Bach Players prove to be proficient and engaging interpreters.

Early Music, vol. 47, no. 2, 2019