- Concerto for harpsichord, strings & continuo No. 4 in A major, BWV 1055
- Concerto for harpsichord, strings & continuo No. 3 in D major, BWV 1054
- Concerto for harpsichord, strings & continuo No. 2 in E major, BWV 1053
- Concerto for harpsichord, strings & continuo No. 5 in F minor, BWV 1056
- Concerto for harpsichord, 2 recorders, strings & continuo No. 6 in F major, BWV 1057
The first thing you'll notice about Angela Hewitt's Bach keyboard concertos is their delicacy. That shouldn't come as a surprise, really, as the acclaimed Canadian pianist is known for the clarity and grace of her playing, in repertoire ranging from Ravel to Bach, whose keyboard works she has now recorded in their entirety. Still, the performances here -- backed by the Australian Chamber Orchestra -- are remarkably refined, creating moods of mesmerizing suspense and offering a pleasing alternative to the more rhythmically aggressive style of many of today's early-music mavens. The first volume contains the concertos in D and G Minor (which are also familiar in their versions for solo violin), the Fifth Brandenburg, and the A Minor Triple Concerto, the latter two featuring soloists Alison Mitchell and Richard Tognetti on flute and violin (as well as harpsichord continuo in the Brandenburg -- an uncommon blend of old and new). Volume Two takes in the five remaining works, several of which are also better known as violin concertos, and concludes with Bach's F Major adaptation of the Fourth Brandenburg, with the piano replacing the solo violin. Bach buffs will want both discs, of course, as will those who have collected the previous offerings in Hewitt's splendid Bach cycle. But the pianist's unerringly musical approach transcends niche appeal, and music lovers of all kinds are encouraged to take pleasure in her exceptional achievement.