Generations of piano students are very familiar with it: the “little book of notes” that the Thomaskantor compiled for his young wife. Many of the short minuets, marches or polonaises found their way into popular piano schools and became known worldwide. Some of the compositions are relatively easy to learn on the piano, and so many people think of a simple exercise book for instrumental pedagogical home use when they hear the word “little music book”. But as always with Bach, one does not do justice to the matter if one only looks at it superficially: Musically profound are all the pieces, and there are also technically demanding works such as the Partitas in A minor and C minor in the booklet. The compact Bach piano cosmos, presented unpretentiously by James Maddox, is completed by no less expressive vocal compositions, which Ingrid Schmithüsen makes shine with her bell-clear soprano.

“… Schmithüsen displays a light soprano as clear as a bell; it is a pleasure to listen to her.“
(Fono Forum 4/2006)

“A fantastic project – presenting the entire Notebook on one recording. And in a version in which the sound esthetics and interpretational approach harmonize coherently.“
(crescendo 7/2005)

CD 1
1. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Prélude 1:52
2. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Allemande 3:08
3. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Corrente 2:35
4. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Sarabande 2:48
5. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Menuet 2:06
6. Partita in A Minor, BWV 827: Gigue 3:26
7. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Menuets Nos. 4, BWV Anh. III 114 & 5, BWV Anh. III 114 3:28
8. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Menuet No. 7 in G Major, BWV Anh. II 116 1:41
9. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Polonaise No. 10 in G Minor, BWV Anh. II 119 0:52
10. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Menuet No. 9 in B-Flat Major, BWV Anh. II 118 1:03
11. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Polonaise No. 8a in F Major, BWV Anh. II 117a 1:13
12. Notebooks for Anna Magdalena Bach, Polonaise No. 8b in F Major, BWV Anh. II 117b 1:08
13. Rondo No. 6 in B-Flat Major 3:45
14. March No. 16 in D Major, Wq. 116 1:01
15. Polonaise in G Mino 1:45
16. March No. 18 in G Major 1:15
17. Polonaise No. 19 in G Minor 2:04
18. Songs and Arias, Aria di Giovannini No. 37 in E-Flat Major, BWV 518: Willst du dein Herz mir schenken 2:40
19. Aria No. 41 in E-Flat Major, BWV 509: Gedenke doch, mein Geist, zurücke 1:01
20. Aria No. 25 in E-Flat Major: Bist du bei mir 2:12
21. March No. 23 in E-Flat Major, BWV Anh. II 127 1:23
22. Polonaise No. 28 in G Major 2:06
23. Petites pièces per il cembalo solo, No. 27, Arioso con 7 Variationi, Wq. 118/4 2:47
24. French Suite No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 813: Allemande 2:37
25. French Suite No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 813: Courante 2:01
26. French Suite No. 2 in C Minor, BWV 813: Sarabande 4:15
27. Aria No. 26 in G Major 4:42
28. Rezitativ No. 34 in G Major, BWV 82: Ich habe genug 1:15
29. Arie No. 34 in G Major, BWV 82: Schlummert ein ihr matten Augen 6:10
CD 2
1. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Prélude 5:04
2. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Allemande 3:52
3. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Corrente 4:55
4. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Sarabande 6:12
5. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Tempo di Gavotta 1:55
6. Partita in E Minor, BWV 830: Gigue 5:44
7. Menuet fait par Mons in G Major 1:02
8. Polonaise No. 24 in D Minor, BWV Anh. II 128 1:54
9. Musette No. 22 in D Major, BWV Anh. II 126 0:57
10. Menuet No. 36 in D Minor, BWV Anh. II 132 0:54
11. Choral No. 39 in B-Flat Major, BWV 299: Dir, dir, Jehova, will ich singen 2:35
12. Aria No. 33 in F Minor, BWV 516: Warum betrübst du dich 1:20
13. Choral No. 35 in C Major, BWV 514: Schaff’s mit mir Gott 0:46
14. Das Wohltemperierte Clavier I in C Major, BWV 846: No. 29, Praeludium 1:57
15. Choral No. 11 in A Minor, BWV 691: Wer nur den lieben Gott lässt walten 2:02
16. Choral No. 12 in F Major, BWV 510: Gib dich zufrieden und sei stille 1:14
17. Choral No. 13 in G Minor, BWV 511: Gib dich zufrieden und sei stille 1:01
18. Arie No. 20 in G Minor, BWV 515a: So oft ich meine Tobackspfeife 4:03
19. Marsch No. 32 in F Major, BWV Anh. III 131 0:41
20. Menuet No. 3 in F Major, BWV Anh. II 113 1:27
21. Menuet No. 14 in A Minor, BWV Anh. II 120 1:05
22. Menuet No. 15 in C Minor, BWV Anh. II 121 1:05
23. French Suite No. 1 in D Minor, BWV 812: Allemande 4:47
24. French Suite No. 1 in D Minor, BWV 812: Courante 1:59
25. French Suite No. 1 in D Minor, BWV 812: Sarabande 3:11
26. French Suite No. 1 in D Minor, BWV 812: Menuets 1 & 2 3:14
27. French Suite No. 1 in D Minor, BWV 812: Gigue 2:55
28. Choral No. 12 in F Major, BWV 510: Gib dich zufrieden und sei stille 0:54
29. Choral No. 40 in F Major, BWV 517: Wie wohl ist mir, oh Freund der Seelen 1:21
30. Choral No. 42 in F Major, BWV 513: O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort 1:13

 

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