Sarabande from piano Partita No. 6 in E minor BWV 830 by J.S. Bach, transcription by Charlotte Bray
Instrumentation flute, oboe, clarinet in A, bassoon, french horn, trumpet in Bb, two violins, viola, cello, double bass (or multiple strings)
First Performance 20 April 2016, Southwark Cathedral, London; City of London Sinfonia under Stephan Layton
Commissioned by the City of London Sinfonia
Essentially sorrowful in nature, Bach’s Sarabande from piano Partita No. 6 in E minor appears to hold an elaborate and intimate conversation with the listener. Encompassing a whole range of emotions, the darkness is interrupted with glimpses of light and hopeful, joyous twists.
In making an arrangement of something so immaculately beautiful, I tried to change it as little as possible. Staying true to the original in terms of pitch, I super imposed my own expression of the piece on to Bach’s composition, as if the ensemble were soloist.